Give Michigan Election Clerks Additional Time for Processing Absentee Ballots

Give Michigan Election Clerks Additional Time for Processing Absentee Ballots

April 2, 2022
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Signatures: 20Next Goal: 25
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Why this petition matters

Started by Teagan Schmitt

In wake of the 2020 presidential election, many Americans lost faith in the integrity of election results, partially due to claims that attacked the validity of absentee and mail-in ballots. It is vital that citizens of a democracy are confident in the government’s ability to give efficient and accurate results, which is why it is important that Michigan’s laws for absentee voting don’t become outdated.

Currently, Michigan is one of 26 states that allows no-reason or any-reason absentee voting. This means that any eligible voter can request an absentee ballot and use it to cast their vote. Eight other states conduct all-mail elections, while the rest require a valid excuse to vote absentee. While Michigan is in the majority in terms of who can vote absentee, our laws for processing ballots seem outdated. Michigan allows one day of early processing in counties with more than 25,000 residents while counties with fewer residents can only process on election day. More than 25 other states allow some form of processing multiple days before election day.

Keep in mind the differences between processing and counting absentee ballots. Processing involves verifying ballots, while counting involves tallying the votes. The act of processing these ballots is more time-consuming, which is why many states allow it to occur prior to election day. This means clerks will need less time to tally votes in these states.

In the 2020 presidential election, more that 3.1 million people voted absentee in Michigan. With such a large number of ballots to count, Michigan clerks could need more time to process all the voter information that comes with these ballots in future elections. The alternative is spending millions of dollars on hiring more election workers to lighten the load. Giving clerks more time to process ballots would make elections cheaper and easier for election workers, allowing Michigan to sustain a secure, accessible, and convenient way to vote.

This petition is asking our local state Senators and Representatives to give Michigan clerks more time to process absentee ballots prior to election day. Sign this petition to show the following lawmakers our support for this change.

·       Sen. Ken Horn

·       Sen. Kevin Daley

·       Sen. Jim Stamas

·       Rep. Annette Glenn

·       Rep. Rodney Wakeman

·       Rep. Amos O’Neal

·       Rep. Timothy Beson




National Conference of State Legislatures, “Voting Outside the Polling Place: Absentee, All-Mail, and other Voting at Home Options,”, March 15, 2022.

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Signatures: 20Next Goal: 25
Support now