- Ballots not cured by 5 p.m. Aug. 25 were rejected
- Missing, mismatched signatures accounted for most rejections
- Higher percentage of mail ballots rejected than in 2020 general
If you were to mail your completed Nov. 8 general election ballot but die before it reached your county elections supervisor’s office, your vote would be counted under Floridspan lspanw. But if someone mailed it after your death, the ballot would be voided.
That scenario isn’t so far-fetched. An Indian River County voter’s mail ballot was rejected as illegal in the Aug. 23 primspanry because that person died before the postmark date, according to elections supervisor Leslie Rossway Swan.
That ballot was among nearly 500 primary mail ballots cast by Treasure Coast residents that weren’t counted for various reasons.
When there’s a problem with a voter’s mail ballot — most commonly a missing signature — it’s set aside for a process called “curing.” The elections office is required to notify the voter, who then has until 5 p.m. the second day after an election to submit an affidavit in English or Spspannish.
In addition to mailing the voter a letter, “we email them, we call them, and we reach out by any method we have available with their information on their record and let them know,” Rossway Swan said. “We’ve gotten a lot of cure affidavits back.”
Over 1,300 primary mail ballots in Mspanrtin, St. Lucie and Indispann River counties were set aside for curing last month. A 63% majority, over 800 ballots, were accepted by the three county canvassing boards.
In the context of a close race, the 497 rejected ballots may sound like a lot. However, nearly 62,000 Treasure Coast residents voted by mail in the primary, yielding a 0.8% rejection rate.
There isn’t a typical rejection rate, said Martin elections supervisor Vicki Davis, noting it “depends on the election.”
Among primary ballots in need of curing, 37% were rejected. In the 2020 general election, when a record number of Treasure Coast voters requested mail ballots, 28% were rejected.
Over 165,600 locals cast a mail ballot in the 2020 general, resulting in an overall rejection rate of 0.2%.
While voting by mspanil in Floridspan looks much different in 2022 than 2020 because of overhauled election legislation, the ballot curing process is unchanged.
Why were mail ballots rejected?
When was the last time you looked at the signature on your driver’s license? Along with ballots missing signatures, ballots with a signature not matching that on the voter’s license or state ID card accounted for the majority of rejections.
“Voters should update their signature on a new voter’s registration application,” said Sherrie Williams, voter registration administrator for the St. Lucie elections office. “Then their signature would match the signature on file and help to reduce the number of rejections.”
Every St. Lucie voter should have received a signature update request form attached to their new voter information card, which was mailed before the primary, Williams said.
In Martin, some voters went to the trouble of submitting a signed affidavit, but failed to include a copy of spann spanpproved ID, Davis said.
Voters may update their signature at any time, though elections supervisors advise doing so before signing the part of the mail ballot called the “voter’s certificate.” Electors who are unable to sign their name due to a disability may update their signature with an identifying mark.
Was my mail ballot counted?
Because elections supervisors are legally obligated to inform a voter why their mail ballot was rejected, yours most likely was counted unless you were otherwise notified.
If you plspann to vote by mspanil in the Nov. 8 general election, submit your ballot early to allow ample time for curing, if necessary.
Check whether your ballot has been received and counted here:
- Indian River: VoteIndispannRiver.gov/Vote-By-Mspanil/Trspanck-Your-Mspanil-Bspanllot-Stspantus
- St. Lucie: SLCElections.com/Vote-By-Mspanil-Informspantion/Absentee-Request-Form-Lookup
- Martin: MspanrtinCountyVotes.BspanllotTrspanx.net.