Fugate Bill to Restore Voting Passes Committee


2/9/2021 12:31:00 PM

OKLAHOMA CITY - State Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Del City, today won committee passage of a bill that would allow absentee voters to vote in person when their absentee ballot is rejected.

House Bill 1843 extends the use of provisional ballots to include situations where a mailed ballot was rejected or wasn’t received in time to be counted. The bill does not change who is allowed to vote or otherwise alter voting procedures.

“The state of Oklahoma has a safe and secure process, through provisional ballots, to allow voting in situations where a voter’s eligibility to vote is uncertain,” said Fugate. “The state election board holds provisional ballots and does not count them until the Friday following an election. During that time, they verify that only a single vote will be counted for the voter.”

Fugate said almost 5,000 voters had their votes rejected in the November 2020 general election. These are legal, registered voters whose votes were not counted because of some kind of administrative problem. Today, there is nothing they can do to fix the problem. HB1843 provides an option for those voters to still have their voices heard in an election.

House Bill 1843 passed the Ethics and Elections Committee by a vote of 6-2. It is now eligible to be considered on the House floor.

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