PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — As the coronavirus pandemic raises health concerns over voting in-person during the November election, some are also questioning the safety and accuracy of voting by mail.
KDKA spoke with elected officials who say your vote is safe and secure in Pennsylvania if you choose to cast it by dropping your ballot in the box.
“It’s the smart way to vote during the pandemic. I don’t care which team you’re playing for. I want everyone to be safe,” Lt. Governor John Fetterman (D).
While a contentious presidential election has caused mail-in voting to come under national fire in recent weeks, Fetterman assures Pennsylvania voters that their ballot will be counted fairly.
“Despite some of the rhetoric out there, it’s 100 percent safe, it’s 100 percent secure. It is bipartisan,” said Fetterman.
“The mail-ins are safe and secure. There’s a bar code. There’s a way to track it,” said Rep. Natalie Mihalek (R).
Rep. Mihalek recognizes voters’ concerns, especially after thousands received double ballots ahead of the June primary.
That’s part of the reason the lawmaker introduced HB 2502 or the Election Integrity Act. It passed the house in May, requiring the Department of State to issue a report of voter data to the state Senate and House within 60 days of the primary.
She got the data last week and found more than 3,200 voters received double ballots statewide, with roughly 3,000 of them in Allegheny County.
An alarming but solvable problem, says Mihalek.
“The reason behind that was some errors within the data collection system. It’s something that we’re able to fix and now we know about it and can pinpoint the problem,” said Mihalek.
To receive your mail-in ballot, Pennsylvania voters must submit their applications online by Oct. 27 at 5 p.m. Ballots must be returned by election day at 8 p.m.
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