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State: At this point, best not to mail that absentee ballot

If you haven’t yet gotten that absentee ballot headed back by mail, it’s now likely too late to chance it.

Voters should no longer turn to the U.S. Postal Service to deliver absentee ballots within one week of Election Day on Tuesday, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said.

“We are too close to Election Day, and the right to vote is too important to rely on the Postal Service to deliver absentee ballots on time,” Benson said. “Citizens who already have an absentee ballot should sign the back of the envelope and hand-deliver it to their city or township clerk’s office or ballot drop box as soon as possible. Voters who haven’t yet received their ballot should go to their clerk’s office to request it in person. They can fill it out, sign the envelope and submit it all in one trip.”

Voters can find the locations of their clerk offices and ballot drop boxes at Michigan.gov/Vote. They also can track their ballot to ensure it is received by their clerk. If a voter sees their ballot is not received, they should contact their clerk’s office immediately.

Absentee ballots will be available at clerk offices for registered voters until 4 p.m. Monday. Unregistered voters can register at their clerk office and then vote an absentee ballot there through 8 p.m. Election Day on Tuesday.

Absentee ballots must be received by the voter’s city or township clerk by 8 p.m. Election Day, Nov. 3, to be counted. Voters can ask immediate family or a member of their household to deliver their ballot for them. With only a week before ballots are due, the Postal Service should be considered a last resort.

Already in Michigan, more than 3.1 million citizens have requested absentee ballots and more than 2 million citizens have voted and returned them, according to the state.

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