Thousands of mail-in votes in danger as application deadline approaches

Published: Feb. 17, 2022 at 8:34 PM CST
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BELTON, Texas (KWTX) - If you submitted a mail-in ballot application for the upcoming election, you may want to double check with your local county election’s office to see if its valid.

Today’s report from the Texas Tribune reveled Lt. Governor Dan Patrick’s campaign instructed eligible voters to send requests for absentee ballots to the Texas Secretary of State’s office instead of their county elections offices. That means thousands of applications may be delayed and they may not receive any mail-in ballots.

McLennan County Democratic Party Chairman Mary Duty says it could be a logistical nightmare to get applications in on time.

“It’s just tightened the timeline to a ridiculous point and I’m afraid there are gonna be a lot of voters, who may have even proudly voted for Dan Patrick, that won’t be able to because they ran out of time,” she said.

Chairman Brad Holland with the McLennan County Republican Party says while he agrees applications should’ve been sent in to the elections offices, he believes those ballots should be delivered to the correct election offices on time.

“Despite all of the hype and all the concern, I think we’re seeing that we’re having a smooth election process already,” he said.

“It’s not difficult to vote and I this year, we’ve made it more safe and more secure to vote. We did not make it harder to vote.”

Two sides, describing two very different possibilities and the deadline for mail-in ballot applications ends Friday. Jared Goldsmith with the McLennan County Elections Office says if you’re unsure about your status, ask.

“I think it would be a good idea to call us,” he said.

“You can come to our office and we’re happy to help you out.”

To add extra precaution, Goldsmith and James Stafford with Bell County says if there’s anything wrong with your application, their offices will contact you to make sure all the information is correct.

“We’ve had several hundred applications by mail that have been rejected at first,” he said.

“Our staff has worked diligently to reach out to each of those applicants and informed them about the rejection and explain why. We help them navigate that process and now, we have about 75 rejections that we haven’t heard back from yet.”

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