November 4th, 2008
01:25 PM ET
11 years ago

Some absentee ballots MIA in NM county

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Some voters took advantage of early voting in New Mexico."]
(CNN) - Officials in Dona Ana County, New Mexico say they are having problems with absentee ballots. But it's unclear just how many voters may not see their vote count.

Jess Williams, public information officer for the county, said of 11,985 absentee ballots requested, 8,141 have been processed. As of midday Tuesday, the number of outstanding absentee ballots is 3,844.

And the Bureau of Elections is still getting calls from residents who have not yet received their absentee ballots, Williams said. He said those voters may go to the polling place where they are registered to request a provisional ballot and they will be allowed to vote.

While that may be an option for some, many voters vote absentee because health problems keep them from going to the polls. Others are away at college, in the military, or out of town for other reasons, and showing up in person may not be possible.

In order to be counted, absentee ballots must reach the county clerk's Office no later than 7pm local time on election day. Absentee ballots also can be delivered to polling places on election day, but only the voter can deliver it.

Both Democrats and Republicans in the county say they are getting calls from voters who feel they've been left out.

Chris Salas, a spokesman for the county Democratic party, said the party office was getting "tons of calls" from people complaining because they have not gotten ballots. Gen Mitchell, a volunteer at the Dona Ana County Republican party, said "legally they were supposed to have them [absentee ballots] out, and they didn't get them out."

Filed under: New Mexico • Voter Problems
soundoff (91 Responses)
  1. Turner, GA

    Here we go again with the GOP trickery! Now they're trying to steal this election too! But I doubt they'll have to be more slick than before with so many more eyes closely watching.....Gobama!!!

    November 4, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  2. Proud to be American

    All votes need to be counted that is not right for a person to cast their vote and it not be counted ...... we knew this was going to be a record number of people voting there should have been a plan B – get it done so all of our voices can be heard.

    Thank you.

    November 4, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  3. Greed is not good

    Hmmm...makes me wonder about absentee ballots. Some states don't even count them until the day after the election.

    I suspect many mail-in ballots end up in a black hole never to counted due to county budget cuts or staff shortages.

    November 4, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  4. bababear

    here we go!!!!

    November 4, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  5. Obama-Fan

    I am greatly disturbed by what I am hearing in regards to voting problems. Especially in New Mexico, which by the way is alot cleaner than old Mexico. Obama rocks!!

    November 4, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  6. Pete in IN

    Oh dang what if Obama wins, do we still have until January to some how pick someone else?

    November 4, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  7. Anonymous


    November 4, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  8. Dawn

    Well lets call out the National Guard...Maybe it is the Democrats that went MIA...Mmmm... Well they may end up somewhere next week..


    November 4, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  9. vote! OBAMA-BIDEN NOV.4th


    November 4, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  10. Tod in CA

    I'm at college and I've overheard more conversations about absent absentee ballots than I can remember. Doesn't matter who wins- some people need to be fired.

    November 4, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  11. Stacy from Loudoun County VA

    The GOP, stealing elections come rain, snow, sleet, or dead of night! If you are in a hospital bed, you must be wheeled down to the polls to deliver your absentee ballot folks. Provisional votes can be protested...

    We are looking like a bunch of darned fools in this election. Jack C, It is Getting Ugly Out There!

    November 4, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  12. Red, Red WHINE!!

    Ok, this is just pathetic now. At first it was ok for there to be a few 'problems', but to see so many across the nation? This has GOT to be investigated....we learned absolutely NOTHING from our 2000 and 2004 elections. This is truly embarrasing.

    Perhaps we really should have the UN watch over our elections, because we sure as heck aren't getting it right!

    November 4, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  13. Joanne Smith

    This is absolutely not fair to voters that need to vote absentee. There should be a law that prohibits the election officials from this kind of behavior, especially in an election as big and important as this one. This is a disgrace to this country.

    November 4, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  14. sandee in Portland

    I am so appalled at all of this turmoil surrounding the people's right to vote and have their voices heard. Since voting and how it's done is determined by each individual state, people in the states that continually have problems need to stand up to their local government and demand these problems be fixed. Don't wait until it's time to vote again, do it now and in the days to come. Call or e-mail your representative. If they think they won't get re-elected the next time, they will do something to correct the problem.

    November 4, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  15. Big Man

    It is pointless to even worry about missing ballots as the entire election will be determined by the Chinese Communist Party, the Pentaverate, and other Transnational Shadow Entities...think about it...

    November 4, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  16. Independent In NY

    Regardless of who wins:

    WE NEED TO UNITE AND BE ONE AMERICA AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 4, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  17. C

    Republicans working hard at the post office! Obama will win anyways!

    November 4, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  18. NM resident

    A similar event was happening in Loving, NM, Eddy County, this morning.

    November 4, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  19. Bushwhacked in Eugene, OR

    Voting problems should not exist in this country! Surely we can get it right! Whether it's trickery or simple ineptness, it's inexcusable.

    We need election reform in this country in the worst way.

    November 4, 2008 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  20. Greg in MN

    How much you want to bet only Democrat ballots will be the ones missing?

    The GOP are liars and cheats!

    November 4, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  21. Christine CT

    This is frightening. We need election reform. This campaign has gone on for two years, it's not like today was a last-minute deal. With all of the problems being reported today, it does seem a bit suspicious.

    November 4, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  22. Bobbi

    Gee, i wonder if the election officials are Republicans?

    Get out and vote people! The GOP voter suppression machine is in full swing, and the only way of beating it is to vote in overwhelming numbers.

    THIS, "my friends," is voter fraud, not what happened with ACORN.

    ACORN got some registrations that were questionable, and when they turned them in to election officials, they TOLD the officials they thought they were suspect. However, they are required by law to turn in every registration form they receive. It's the job of election officials to determine if the registrations are legitimate.

    November 4, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  23. Scott NYC Independent

    I smell a republican at work here – its called voter supression republican style.

    November 4, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  24. lisa

    THIS IS INSANE. WE ARE THE LAUGHING STOCK OF THE WORLD that we can't even provide a trustworthy election system in this country. It's just insane, especially after the last two elections were stolen.
    very disturbing.

    November 4, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  25. Gloria - Minnesota

    That is crazy! The absentee and/or mail-in ballots should be the FIRST to arrive at their respective polling places. (Of course, as the article states, they must be in the County Clerk's office by 7 p.m. on election day, but with so many Americans voting absentee or through the mail for a variety of reasons, there is no legitimate excuse for all these ballots to be MIA!!)

    A Minnesotan for Obama/Biden '08!!!!

    November 4, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
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