GREENSBORO, N.C. — Two Republican members of the North Carolina State Board of Elections have resigned.
The NCSBE issued a statement regarding the resignation of David Black and Ken Raymond. (Scroll to find their full resignation letters at the bottom of this article.)
“We appreciate their service to the State Board, particularly the knowledge and perspective they provided from their years of service as members of the county boards of elections,” the statement said.
Black and Raymond’s resignations follow after the NCSBE agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by the North Carolina Alliance for Retired Americans. The lawsuit sued state officials concerning a number of provisions related to absentee voting.
That’s why state election officials are now trying to make it easier for absentee voters to fix mistakes on their ballot.
The plan still needs to be approved by a judge but would come with two big changes. If you make a mistake on your ballot, it'll be easier to fix in many cases.
Second, you would have a few more days for your ballot to make it to the elections office as long as it's postmarked by Election Day.
"What we're trying to do is make sure voters have certainty," North Carolina State Board of Elections Chair Damon Circosta said.
The plan comes out of a joint motion filed by the State Board of Elections to settle a lawsuit over the absentee voting process.
"This will lessen the circumstances of people having to have their ballot spoiled and start all again. It isn't a cure-all," Circosta said.
He said since absentee ballots went out earlier this month, the most common problems have been missing or misplaced signatures. This would mean you can fix those mistakes rather than filling out a whole new ballot.
"We will send them an affidavit and then the voter must sign under penalty of a felony that the vote, that the ballot they sent us is theirs," Circosta said.
The proposed changes come with nearly one million absentee ballots already requested across the state.
"There are a lot of people who have never voted absentee by mail before," Circosta said, "I was concerned that if we didn't settle these lawsuits now, that a judge might force changes upon us even later in this election season."
If approved, under the agreement, the following issues can be cured by the voter completing and returning an affidavit sent to them by their county board of elections:
- Voter did not sign the Voter Certification
- Voter signed in the wrong place
- Witness or assistant did not print name
- Witness or assistant did not print address
- Witness or assistant did not sign
- Witness or assistant signed on the wrong line
The State Board of Elections said the changes can be implemented as soon as they're approved. A judge will release a decision any day now.
If approved, county boards will be able to accept ballots through November 12, as long as they are postmarked by Election Day.