Battleground States May See Unprecedented Amounts Of Absentee Ballot Rejections

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Andrew Trunsky Political Reporter
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Up to three times as many voters in battleground states could have their votes discarded compared to 2016 if states reject absentee ballots at the same rate as the 2020 primaries, The Associated Press reported.

Millions of voters plan to vote by mail amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and postal delays have been reported across the country, according to AP. Rejection rates could be even more pronounced in urban areas where ballot rejection rates have been higher throughout the 2020 cycle.

“It is the number one thing that keeps me up at night – the idea that voters will do everything they can to ensure their ballot is returned on time and the system will fail them,” Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” (RELATED: Michigan’s Top Elections Official Says Results Won’t Be Available On Nov. 3)

Of the over 2.5 million ballots cast in Michigan’s August primary, approximately 10,000 absentee ballots were rejected, according to the Secretary of State. Over 60% of those rejected did not arrive in time to be tallied or were rejected due to a missing or non-matching signature, state data shows.

The influx of absentee ballots could also delay results in some states, risking the results being contested or widely disbelieved, AP reported. President Donald Trump has said that mail-in ballots will lead to the “most corrupt election” in the country’s history. (RELATED: Here’s How Mail-In Ballots Could Change The Election Results After Nov. 3)

In Pennsylvania, another swing state, as many as 43,000 absentee ballots could be rejected compared to 2,100 in 2016, according to AP. Trump won the state by just over 43,000 votes four years ago.

In seven battleground states, including Michigan and Pennsylvania, between 185,000 and nearly 300,000 absentee ballots could be discarded if the rejection rate remains the same as it was in the primaries and voter turn out matches 2016, the AP reported.

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