‘Naked bal­lots’ con­cern:

Arab Times - - INTERNATIO­NAL -

Democrats are launch­ing a dig­i­tal ad tar­get­ing Penn­syl­va­ni­ans vot­ing by mail to ex­plain how to cor­rectly fill out and re­turn the bal­lots, hop­ing to avert wor­ried pre­dic­tions that 100,000 votes or more could be in­val­i­dated be­cause the bal­lots aren’t put in the proper en­ve­lope.

The so-called naked bal­lots have be­come a huge con­cern for Democrats in the state since the Penn­syl­va­nia Supreme Court ruled last week that bal­lots had to be re­jected if not en­closed in the proper se­crecy en­ve­lope. The rul­ing was a vic­tory for Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s cam­paign in the bat­tle­ground state.

Democrats so far have been far more likely than Repub­li­cans to re­quest mail-in bal­lots in Penn­syl­va­nia and the rest of the coun­try. Trump won Penn­syl­va­nia by a mere 44,000 votes in 2016, and polls show a close race be­tween Trump and Demo­cratic pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nee Joe Bi­den.

A 30-sec­ond dig­i­tal ad re­leased Thurs­day walks vot­ers through the process of cor­rectly fill­ing out and re­turn­ing a Penn­syl­va­nia ab­sen­tee bal­lot. The June pri­mary was the first elec­tion with wide­spread mail vot­ing in the state and most vot­ers have lit­tle ex­pe­ri­ence with the method.

“Re­mem­ber, you must place the bal­lot in the se­crecy en­ve­lope first for your vote to count,” the ad’s male nar­ra­tor says. Af­ter walk­ing vot­ers through a four-step process, he closes by say­ing: “That’s all there is.”

The ad is aimed at vot­ers who have al­ready re­quested a mail-in bal­lot.

“With vote-by-mail re­quests surg­ing, it’s im­por­tant that ev­ery voter us­ing a mail bal­lot for the first time has all the in­for­ma­tion they need so that their bal­lot will be counted, in­clud­ing the im­por­tance of seal­ing their bal­lot in the se­crecy en­ve­lope,” Demo­cratic Na­tional Com­mit­tee Chair­man Tom Perez said in a state­ment.

The Demo­cratic Party said it and the Bi­den cam­paign will also en­gage in ad­di­tional out­reach, in­clud­ing videos of var­i­ous po­lit­i­cal lead­ers cor­rectly fill­ing out a mail bal­lot, to com­bat the prob­lem.

Philadel­phia’s top elec­tions of­fi­cial, a Demo­crat, this week warned of “elec­toral chaos” in Penn­syl­va­nia if the state’s Repub­li­can-con­trolled Leg­is­la­ture does not clar­ify state law to al­low coun­ties to count mail-in bal­lots re­turned with­out se­crecy en­velopes.

(AP)

Sup­port­ers of Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump cheer as he ar­rives to speak dur­ing a cam­paign rally on Sept 22, 2020, in Moon Town­ship, Pa.

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