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Congresswoman Debbie Dingell

Representing the 12th District of Michigan

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Dingell Seeks Resolution to Absentee Voter Mail Issues

October 19, 2018
Press Release

DEARBORN, MI – Today, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) sent a letter to United States Postal Service Postmaster General Megan J. Brennan highlighting reported absentee voter issues in Michigan’s 12th District. Dingell’s office was contacted by multiple voters who had their ballots improperly forwarded back to their home after completing the form this week.

“USPS’s response to these concerns has been prompt and thorough thus far, but the nature of this issue has the potential to affect many absentee ballots in the State of Michigan,” wrote Dingell. “These issues appear to be related to the design of the Michigan absentee ballots, which have bar codes on both sides of the envelope that can result in misreading by USPS machinery. Michigan residents deserve to have confidence that their absentee ballots will be processed without delay or issue, and it is important that we take seriously any concerns in this regard.”

The full letter can be read here and below.

October 19, 2018

Ms. Megan J. Brennan

Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer

United States Postal Service

475 L’Enfant Plaza S.W.

Washington, DC 20260

Dear Ms. Brennan,

                This letter is to follow up on a mail issue discussed in the past weekly conversation between your staff and mine on pending constituent concerns. We need to ensure Michigan residents have confidence in their ability to vote absentee via mail in the upcoming election without issue. In the past several days, problems with the processing of absentee ballots have been raised by constituents in communities across Michigan’s 12th district. Multiple individuals have reported problems where the completed absentee ballot was improperly returned to their home address rather than to the clerk’s office. These issues appear to be related to the design of the Michigan absentee ballots, which have bar codes on both sides of the envelope that can result in misreading by USPS machinery.

                USPS’s response to these concerns has been prompt and thorough thus far, but the nature of this issue has the potential to affect numerous absentee ballots in the State of Michigan. With this in mind, this letter is to follow up on these concerns to ensure that USPS is working to swiftly and efficiently address any problems relating to the mailing of absentee ballots. We understand, for instance, that Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township post offices will hand scan ballots to ensure that they reach their proper destination. Michigan residents deserve to have confidence that their absentee ballots will be processed without delay or issue, and it is important that we take seriously any concerns in this regard. We know you were not the originator of the issue, but we all need to work together to ensure that every vote counts.

            Thank you and I look forward to your prompt response.

 

                                                                                                Sincerely,