October 30th, 2008
07:30 PM ET
9 years ago

Some voters still waiting on absentee ballots

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/30/art.absentee1030.gi.jpg caption="Some voters still haven't received absentee ballots."]
(CNN) – With less than a week until Election Day, some voters are still anxiously awaiting the arrival of their absentee ballots.

Max Lohrey of La Junta in Otero County, Colorado called CNN’s voter hotline concerned that a missing absentee ballot might have “fallen into the hands of the wrong people . . . is this going to be used for fraud?”

Chawnte Williams, is registered to vote in the Denver area but is currently out of state.  Williams reports that she requested an absentee ballot earlier this month and was informed that it would not arrive until the end of October because of printing problems. When the ballot did not arrive as scheduled, she called to check on it again, and was told by her local election officials that they had no record of her requesting an absentee ballot.

“So because of somebody’s clerical error, now it looks like I might not be able to vote,” Williams said on the hotline.  "I feel like I'm not going to be able to vote and there's no reason why," Williams also told CNN in a telephone interview Thursday.

Colorado voters who still have not received their absentee ballot should visit GoVoteColorado.com and access Colorado’s voter registration search engine, says Colorado Secretary of State spokesman Richard Coolidge. The search engine tracks the status of absentee ballots - including whether they have been mailed out, or been returned to election officials in the mail.

Sharon Sisnroy, the Otero County Clerk, told CNN that voters in her county should call or fax an application for a replacement absentee ballot. Once that request is received, Sisnroy’s office will mail out another absentee ballot. Alternatively, Sisnroy advises, voters can come to the Otero Election Division in person and complete the application for a replacement absentee ballot and then obtain the new ballot in person as well.

Some CNN voter hotline callers from Florida have expressed similar concerns. Dr. Stuart Schwartz of Palm Beach County, Florida tells CNN he hasn’t received a replacement absentee ballot after he had to return the first one mailed to him because it was not the proper ballot for him to use to vote.

A caller who lives in Bahamas also reports that she hasn’t received her absentee ballot from Broward County, Florida, even though she has “been trying for weeks” to get in touch with election officials. “It’s impossible for me to vote without receiving my ballot,” the caller said. “I’m unable to go there in person obviously.”

Florida voters who are still awaiting absentee ballots should call their local supervisor in the county where they are registered, according to Jennifer Davis, of the Elections Division in the Florida Secretary of State’s office.

Click here for links to more information about early voting

Filed under: Colorado • Florida • Voter Problems
soundoff (122 Responses)
  1. Northwest Washington

    We need to request that the UN to send in election monitors to supervise our elections. We are just like the banana republics we used to make fun of.

    October 30, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  2. JudyR Arkansas

    It's amazing how all problems with voting are only occurring in battleground states. Makes one truly wonder.

    October 30, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  3. TjayeInLA

    Not to be rude, but had they planned more than 3 weeks prior to election they wouldn't have this issue.

    October 30, 2008 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  4. No Hillary = No Obama

    My absentee went in the mail yesterday and it was for McCain-Palin, not Mr. Fix-It.

    October 30, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  5. vahe

    get those people forms to vote!!!!!!!!!!!! GOP i hate you... you lost your brand for life

    October 30, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  6. Michael Fisher

    Republicans are You Happy NOW??

    you know good and well if every american could vote you lose

    so when this happens....YOU SMILE

    you guys are evil....i swear your evil and i hope you pay

    October 30, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  7. DeVone

    that is why I will be voting for early voting in Maryland

    October 30, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  8. The Lady

    I think they should fine states where they have voting problems.This is totaly unacceptable in 2008.

    October 30, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  9. Tabaqui

    That is a sad and sorry state of affairs. You should be able to download a ballot online and fax it to the appropriate person. I'm sure that putting your DL number, SS number, or other such info – or providing a copy of relevant ID with the ballot – could make it all legal and correct.

    No one should lose out on voting because County Courthouses or other government offices move too slow or don't know what they're doing. It's a shame!

    October 30, 2008 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  10. Chris in Va.

    Curious....here in Va. I received a robocall from the Republican Party of Virginia about a month ago stating that they would be sending me an absentee ballot. I found this curious as it was a robo call and at no time was I prompted to request that I be sent an absentee ballot which I will not need anyway as I will be home to vote. To this day I have not received that ballot which brings me to wonder how many voters who may not be able to go to the polls ARE waiting for their ballot in the mail.

    October 30, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  11. Tim E

    Honey, take it back to Walmart's Customer Service Desk. They'll give you a credit and you can use it next time.

    October 30, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  12. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    Florida just can't get it right. Maybe they should concentrate on their state needs instead of everything else.

    October 30, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  13. D.Kimbro OHIO

    Republican tactics. They cant win an election so why not steal it.

    October 30, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  14. vote

    if Obama loses in this election, race-relations in America will be trobuled for sometime to come. If Obama was a white candidate, after all he has done to gain the confidence of the American people, this would be a landslide. But b.c he is black he has to prove himself, even Sarah Palin was accepted with arms wide open!!!

    This guy is what Amerrica and the world needs,

    October 30, 2008 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  15. henriettap

    This is deplorable another way to keep people from voting it is stealing the vote ,and that it is not only happening in one county but counties in the north and south of Colorado it should not be happening and I hope that this is being looked into.

    October 30, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  16. Ian

    I'm sure there's nothing to worry about. The electronic machines may be another story.

    October 30, 2008 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  17. Kate Fergus

    All individuals who can vote MUST VOTE. Don't disenfranchise yourselves. This is your opportunity to hire the next president.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 30, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  18. Ron was a REP now a DEM

    Just a little note about Sen McCains $5,000.00 tax credit to purchase health insurance. I lost my healthcare benifits this year with my employer that coverage cost me $58.00 weekly thats $224.00 monthly and $2648 yearly. he same coverage with COBRA was $1200. monthly and $14,000.00 yearly How does John McCain think a $5,000.00 tax credit will offset the real cost of privite insurance? It will cost me $11,852 .00 more dollars out of my pocket and the empolyer will save @ $10,000.00 dollars per employee and will probably not increase the employees pay rate.

    October 30, 2008 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  19. Gracie

    We live in thee GREATEST country in the world with the BEST technology in the world and yet we still CAN NOT generate a VALID and ACCURATE VOTING POLICIES and PROCEDURES!!!





    October 30, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  20. KG

    OBAMA is playing everyone for fools and he may just get away with it. As I always told my kids when they would hurt themselves doing something stupid." YOU DID IT TO YOURSELF"

    October 30, 2008 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  21. Heather

    Can't wait to hear how the Republicans are to blame for voter supression....Bound to happen, especially since McCain.Palin WILL whoop Obama. Then we will get to sit back and hear all the blame about how YET again we stole the election. Just get ready Obamanation...you will all get to see the inaguration of a truely great American....John McCain.

    October 30, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  22. dustin

    with voting being the most fundamental aspect of our nation, the "greatest" nation on earth, why can't we get this voting thing down, we know its coming every four years and then people are shocked when things don't work. Maybe if more people joined the scouts they would have learned the motto "always be prepared," but seriously this is getting ridiculous.

    October 30, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  23. Georgina

    This sounds so strangely familiar to me. I'm active duty military stationed in Virginia, but I'm registered to vote absentee in Michigan. I've been calling the county clerk's office, the city clerk's office, and the state's clerk's office to get some information on the status of my absentee ballot for WEEKS. Finally I reached a woman who verified I was registered, but she had a stack of requests and had not had a chance to mail the ballots out yet. This was last week. I told her with only 2 weeks left to election day, I was extremely concerned that people (especially us active duty military members who are more than likely out of state and, in many cases, out of the country) would not have enough time to have their ballots not only mailed to them, but to mail them back in time to be counted. She tells me to fax her a sheet of paper with my name and signature on it requesting my ballot. I don't even understand what that was for since I'm already registered. Anyway, I called back earlier this week and they confirmed my ballot was mailed out on the 26th, but it's now 4 days later and I have yet to receive it. Fortunately, I mailed off my Federal Write-In Ballot last week so I was able to get my vote in, but I'm not sure how many other people are aware they can do that. Because of these people's disorganization and incompetence, some of our voices are not able to be heard. This issue really needs to be addressed.

    October 30, 2008 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  24. vote! OBAMA-BIDEN NOV.4th


    October 30, 2008 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  25. Charlie in Maine

    McCain should be very worried but he is not. Do his friends at Diebold (the company whomakes the machines) have a suprise for us? I pray not but it seems like the only way he could win

    October 30, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
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