Absentee voting starts in Alabama: What you need to know

Absentee voting starts in Alabama: What you need to know
To vote absentee, first you need to fill out an absentee ballot application. (Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Wednesday was the first day Alabamians could vote absentee for the general election in November.

To vote absentee, first you need to fill out an absentee ballot application.

Secretary of State John Merrill said there have been 25,000 absentee ballot applications submitted already.

On the application, a person would need to indicate why they are not going to the polls. Merrill said because of COVID-19 people use the excuse on the application that says “I have a physical illness or infirmity which prevents my attendance at the polls.”

Next you sign the bottom of the application. Then you can mail or hand it in to the county absentee election manager with a photocopy of your ID.

The absentee ballot and an affidavit envelop will then be sent to you through the mail.

At that point you either need a notary or two witnesses to complete the affidavit.

Then you can mail the ballot back to the election manager.

“I believe we’re going to be north of 125,000 absentee ballots successfully processed for our voters throughout the state of Alabama,” Merrill said

Alabamians can’t vote in person and absentee.

“Whenever the ballot is mailed to you, then that’s noted on your voter registration record,” he said.

Merrill says poll workers will know the day of the election if a ballot was mailed to someone.

The absentee voting process is different from universal mail-in voting, which people have heard a lot about from national leaders recently.

Universal mail-in voting is when ballots are automatically mailed to registered voters. Universal mail-in voting is illegal in Alabama while some other states allow it.

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