Election officials recommending voters to vote by absentee ballots

RAPID CITY, S.D. — With social distancing still one of the COVID-19 guidelines, election officials highly recommend using an absentee ballot for the upcoming South Dakota primaries and the local elections.

Absentee ballots are being mailed out to register voters, and they’re encouraged to fill them out and mail them back. If you’re not registered, you can do that and request a ballot on the Secretary of State’s website.

You will have to include a copy of a government issued ID, driver’s license and such when you mail in the ballot.

“Its easiest if people go to the polls on election day but considering we want to keep the public and our poll workers safe, we really are encouraging people to do it by mail,” said Cindy Mohler, the Pennington County Auditor.

While every registered voter is receiving an absentee ballot in the mail, Mohler says it still raises concerns of fraud and keeping the results true.

“You fill out your absentee ballot request form, you sign in, you send in the proof of ID so that we can verify that’s who filled out the form,” Mohler said. “Hopefully and then when you do get your ballot on the back of the ballet envelope, you will have to sign your name again. We do compare those signatures on the back of the envelope to the original application for the absentee ballots, so that’s a step to hopefully protecting the voter.”

The absentee ballots must be completed and postmarked by June 1, the day before the election. There’s also a drop-off box in the foyer of the Pennington County Administration building.

Categories: Coronavirus, Local News, Politics & Elections, South Dakota News