ATLANTA – The ACLU of Georgia sent letters to the top ten populous counties in the state – Chatham, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Hall, and Henry – urging their elections officials to begin processing accepted absentee ballots as permitted by an emergency rule that the State Election Board passed on July 1 and amended on August 10. The emergency rule permits county elections officials to begin processing absentee ballots at 8:00 a.m. on the third Monday prior to Election Day. That date is today, October 19, 2020.
Processing absentee ballots consists of removing absentee ballots from their envelopes and scanning them. Processing absentee ballots now will reduce the burden on hardworking elections officials both on and after November 3, 2020, the final day in which Georgia voters can cast a ballot. Furthermore, processing absentee ballots now will improve voter confidence in the administration of the election.
“The ACLU of Georgia thanks all counties that have begun or will soon begin processing absentee ballots pursuant to this rule. For those counties that have not already done so, we stand ready to help at any step of this process including helping to give the requisite notice to the Secretary of State’s office and to the public, as well as providing technical assistance on processing absentee ballots early,” said Sean J. Young, legal director of the ACLU of Georgia.