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Judge rejects suits over Arkansas absentee ballot rejections

Arkansas

TAMPA, FL – OCTOBER 22: Voting booths are setup at the Yuengling center on the campus of University of South Florida as workers prepare to open the doors to early voters on October 22, 2018 in Tampa, Florida. Florida voters head to the polls to cast their early ballots in the race for the Senate as well as the Governors seats. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A federal judge on Monday rejected an effort to require Arkansas election officials to give absentee voters a chance to correct their ballots before they’re rejected due to signature issues.

U.S. District Judge P.K. Holmes denied the motion for a preliminary injunction in the lawsuit filed by the League of Women Voters of Arkansas. The group’s lawsuit said state law regarding absentee ballots disenfranchises voters because they’re not given any notice or chance to cure any deficiencies.

State law requires election officials to reject absentee ballots that are missing a voter’s signature or if there’s a mismatch between the signature, address or date of birth on the absentee ballot and the application materials.

Arkansas and other states are seeing a surge in absentee ballots because of the coronavirus pandemic. Gov Asa Hutchinson signed an executive order in August stating that concerns about the virus were a valid reason to vote absentee.

Copyright 2020 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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