New ruling orders Georgia to count absentee ballots that were rejected for birthdate errors

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Another day and another federal court ruling as Georgia’s gubernatorial election continues into its second week.

A federal judge ruled yesterday that the Georgia election officials must count absentee ballots that were thrown out due to missing and incorrect birth dates. The judge did not allow ballots with incorrect addresses to be counted.

Newly appointed secretary of state Robyn Crittenden issued a statement today outlining the steps her office is taking to comply with the new order.

According to Crittenden, the Secretary of State’s office has issued an official election bulletin to county election superintendents and registrars to take the following actions immediately:

  • Review each rejected absentee ballot to ensure that none were rejected solely because of an error or omission in the date of birth on the absentee ballot oath envelope.
  • If any absentee by mail ballot was rejected solely because of an error or omission in the date of birth, count the ballot unless the voter cast a subsequent absentee ballot or voted on Election Day. 
  • If a county’s vote totals change after this review, re-certify the election results with the updated totals and forward the new certification to the Secretary of State’s office.
  • Following this review, complete a confirmation form indicating that there were no changes to the county’s election results or, if there were changes, indicating that any absentee ballots previously rejected solely because of an error or omission in the date of birth have been added to the certified results.
  • Return this completed confirmation form to the Secretary of State’s office no later than 5 PM on Friday, November 16, 2018.