Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said Sunday that it could take up to a week to count all of Michigan’s absentee ballots for November’s election.
“We should be prepared for this to be closer to an election week, as opposed to an Election Day,” she said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “The bottom line is we are not going to have the full results and a counting of all of our ballots on election night.”
Benson said that Michigan’s election officials were “laser-focused” on ensuring that all ballots are counted accurately, and referenced how her office had purchased more voting tabulators in order to ensure that the influx of absentee ballots could be counted as efficiently as possible.
“If it takes a few extra days to ensure we have a full and accurate counting of the results of every race, that’s what it’s going to take. And we’re going to be transparent throughout that whole process to make sure every citizen knows exactly where we are in the counting process and how many more ballots we have to get through,” Benson said. (RELATED: Here’s How Absentee Ballots Could Change The Election Results After Nov. 3)
Benson also mentioned the legal changes that her office has proposed in order to count Michigan’s ballots more efficiently, including expanding early voting and allowing for election officials to record ballots days before Nov. 3, but acknowledged that the state legislature has “not acted for reasons that I don’t fully, completely understand.” (RELATED: Here’s What North Carolina Is Doing To Ensure Results On Election Night)
Though Benson conceded that the delays in results could allow for false narratives to spread, she said that her office would counter “misinformation with truth and accuracy.”
Benson’s comments come as Michigan has taken steps to prepare for an unprecedented election which is expected to have record-high turnout, a spokeswoman for her office told the Daily Caller News Foundation. (RELATED: Some Battleground States Don’t Know When Election Results Will Be Available)
In addition to allocating over $11 million towards voting machines, personal protective equipment and more, the state launched its “Democracy MVP” campaign in April, which recruited more than 6,500 poll workers, Tracy Wimmer, Benton’s spokeswoman, told the DCNF in August.
“Turnout has been predicted to double or even triple, and we are preparing for that possibility,” Wimmer said, referencing both those new measures and proposed legal changes.
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