Overwhelmed by New Jersey voters’ requests for email ballots, officials in the storm-battered state announced late this afternoon that they were extending the deadline for email voting until Friday, Nov. 9, the Associated Press reported.
Over the weekend, Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) said voters displaced by Hurricane Sandy could vote via email ballots, using a system usually reserved for Americans living abroad, Politico reported. However, some voters complained this week that county election officials hadn’t replied to their requests for email ballots.
American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey spokesperson Katie Wang said at least 1,500 people hadn’t heard back from officials, Bloomberg Businessweek reported.
Other voters complained that they got “mailbox full” messages when they tried to submit their votes, Politico reported.
Hudson County Deputy County Clerk Janet Larwa told the AP that by 3 p.m. today, her county had received 4,000 requests for email ballots. "It's a different kind of nuts," she said.
“It has become apparent that the County Clerks are receiving applications at a rate that outpaces their capacity to process them without an extension of the current schedule," Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, who is also New Jersey's secretary of state, said today, according to the AP.
Now, voters who requested email ballots by 5 p.m. today will receive them no later than noon on Friday and have until 8 p.m. to email them back, the AP reported.
Following the announcement, the American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey asked a state judge to allow displaced New Jersey voters to use the Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot, Politico reported.
“We think simply extending the time doesn’t protect everybody and may result in the disenfranchisement of a great deal of people,” the ACLU’s Alexander Shalom told Politico.
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