People Overseas Wait to See if Mail-In Ballots They Mailed Will Arrive
State electoral officials, as well as legal and technology experts and some nonprofit voting advocacy groups, argued that sending ballots electronically raised security and privacy concerns and that changing the rules so close to the election would put an undue burden on election officials and confuse voters. Earlier this year, several federal agencies issued guidelines classifying electronic ballot return as a high risk.
J. Remy Green, one of the attorneys who brought the case, said that electronic voting via the internet or apps should not be associated with electronic transmission of ballot papers, which is more difficult to hack as they are individuals E-mail accounts and fax transmissions act that the security risk has been outweighed by the benefit to overseas voters. The Department of Defense even offers a free email fax service for returning overseas ballots.
George Sorrells, an information technology professional living outside of Zurich, and his wife, Julie Sorrells, traced their ballots to Wisconsin to find his had arrived, but hers hadn’t. When Mr. Sorrell did research, he found that he had forgotten to sign his wife’s voting slip as a witness and that she had to mail a new one from Switzerland.
Shortly before the election, they sent the FedEx second ballot. Mr Sorrells, who spent nearly $ 80 in total on returning his ballots, said it was worth making sure they got there. But he said in a way that he would have felt more secure if there had been an email option.
“I paid all the extra money to find the stupid thing,” he said, “and then I still landed for almost two weeks thinking, ‘OK, did that thing actually make it there or not?'”
Dana Rawls, a Georgian voter who works in communications in Adelaide, Australia, said she had voted out of the country with no problems since 2006, “but this year has been an absolute nightmare.”
After the Georgia primary election in June, Ms. Rawls was dismayed to learn that the local polling station never received her full ballot. She was determined to count her vote in November.