NEW ORLEANS— This week, Louisiana Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin addressed whether he would appeal a federal judge’s ruling to force his office to accomodate voters who want to mail in ballots because of COVID-19 precautions.
Ardoin said, “We need some certainty in this election process. That’s the judge’s rule, we’re moving forward with that. If there is some sort of appeal, which hasn’t been decided yet, I think it would be under normal circumstances that would probably be after the election.”
Ardoin’s office was under fire earlier this week for shutting down its website on National Voter Registration Day, in what he called ‘an unfortunate error for which he takes full responsibility.
The responsibility for making sure this election runs smoothly is being taken seriously by the citizens of New Orleans. Many have asked to work at the polls.
Orleans Clerk of Criminal Court, Arthur A. Morrell stated, “We’ve gotten over 400 applicants. We’re in the process of training them tight now. We need somewhere in the neighborhood of 1800 commissioners at a normal election. This one, we may need more.”
In St. Tammany Parish, they’re also bracing for big numbers at the polls, but they’ve already seen a dramatic increase in those absentee requests.
” Our mail applications has increased by triple from the previous election the primary and general election cycle. We were somewhere around 4,000 and now were just under 12,000- right under 13,000,” said Dwayne Walls, St. Tammany Registrar of Voters.
In Jefferson Parish, Registrar Dennis Dimarco’s office is exploring other unique ways for absentee voter participation.
“Once you receive your ballot, if you want you can come in and drop it off. Or you can have a child or a brother drop it off too. We’re trying to make it as easy as possible. We’re looking at the possibility of a drop box so you could not even come in the building, drop it off and your ballot will count. Our concern is making sure everyone who wants to vote is given the opportunity to vote,” said DiMarco.
The deadline to register to vote in-person in October 5th. That’s also the deadline for mail-in applications for registering to vote must be post-marked.
October 13th is the deadline to register online.
COVID-19 Absentee ballots must be requested by Friday October 30th, and they must be returned to the local registrar by Monday, November 7th.
Election Day is Tuesday November 3rd.