NewsPublic Affairs / July 27, 2020

Expanded Vote-By-Mail Unlikely This Fall As Holcomb Resists

Article origination IPBS-RJC
Indiana's June primary had both in-person voting and expanded vote-by-mail. - Justin Hicks/IPB News

Indiana's June primary had both in-person voting and expanded vote-by-mail.

Justin Hicks/IPB News

Voter advocates want Hoosiers to be able to vote by mail in this year’s general election.

Groups including Common Cause Indiana, the League of Women Voters of Indiana, the ACLU of Indiana and the Greater Indianapolis NAACP all want the state to expand vote-by-mail to anyone who wants it for the Nov. 3 election. They also want those ballots to count if they’re postmarked by Election Day (instead of having to physically arrive at the county clerk’s office by noon Nov. 3). And they want counties to set up safe drop-off locations for those ballots.

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Gov. Eric Holcomb voted in-person in the primary. And his focus is on making sure the state provides in-person voting opportunities in the fall.

“We are in a much better situation now than we were there when we delayed it," Holcomb said. "And we have the proper PPE to man the voting sites.”

Asked if there were any issues caused by expanded vote-by-mail in the primary, Holcomb cited delays in counting ballots and counties being “overwhelmed” by demand. Many argue the “overwhelmed” issue could be solved by expanding the system now to allow counties time to prepare.

Holcomb said vote-by-mail should be expanded if the state is under a "Stay-At-Home" order again.

Contact reporter Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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