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Elections officials speak on chances of delays and fraud in mail-in voting

Influx in mail-in voting expected in 2020 election
Posted at 12:09 AM, Sep 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-10 00:09:54-04

COLLIER & LEE COUNTY, Fla. — Local election offices are expecting an influx of mail-in voters this year due to the pandemic.

Many people skeptical about the mail-in process have addressed concerns of mailing delays and voter fraud.

Election officials in both Collier and Lee counties say they are fully prepared for the 2020 election, and aren’t too concerned about voter fraud.

“What’s more on our mind is to ensure the integrity of the election, making sure that our voters have confidence in the process. Florida’s been voting by mail for decades, ” said Trish Robertson.

She provides a few things that you can do at home to make sure everything is correct on your end.

“It is very important that voters take their responsibility seriously and that includes keeping their voter information updated, their name address and signature, ” said Robertson.

Tommy Doyle of Lee County, says most of the time ballot errors are not on purpose.

“Most perceptive fraud is a mistake by the voter or a mistake by the election worker,” said Doyle.

He encourages voters to follow all directions throughly, get ballots in early, and track its progress.

“Track your ballot it will show that we sent it, that we received it, and it will show that we counted it, ” said Doyle.

In 2016’s presidential election 56,637 Collier County residents voted by mail, and 74, 928 voted early.

In Lee County 157, 130 people voted by mail, and 100,893 voted early.

Officials say they are prepared for mail-in numbers to double this year.

Doyle reminds voters that amid President Donald Trump's remarks to encourage voters to vote twice, it's against the law and will be flagged by the system.

“Somehow if it slips through the cracks, I’m not saying it hasn’t but if it does and you willfully vote twice than you have willfully broken the law, ” said Doyle.

Robertson says voters have options to offset potential delays in the mailing system.

“If you don’t feel like you want to place your ballot in the U.S. post office mall box you can drop it off at one of our drop boxes, ” said Robertson.

For more information on requesting your mail-in ballot for the 2020 election or general voter registration information head to dos.myflorida.com

Key Dates and Deadlines in Florida

Tues, Nov. 3: In-Person Voting
Fri, Nov. 13: Absentee/Mail-In Delivered By Date