“Trump campaign tells elections boards across NC to ignore state guidance on absentee ballots”


County boards of elections across North Carolina on Tuesday started the process of determining which absentee ballots could be accepted for the general election and which needed further work by voters.

With record numbers of voters casting ballots by mail this election because of the pandemic – more than 278,000 ballots have already been mailed in, compared with fewer than 200,000 total in the 2016 election – the task is an arduous one that will last past Election Day. A battle between President Donald Trump’s campaign and state elections officials isn’t making it any easier, either.

The Trump campaign sent a letter to all Republicans on county election boards, urging them to disregard new state guidelines for absentee-by-mail ballots….

Judith Kelley, dean of the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University and an international expert on election security, said it’s “absolutely not common” for a political campaign to instruct local election officials on which state rules to follow or not follow.

“I don’t recall a similar situation,” Kelley said, adding that the letter is the latest aspect of a national push by the Trump campaign to cast doubt on the outcome of the upcoming elections.

“It’s an effort to sow confusion and to undermine the confidence in the process,” she said. “We should all be able to unite around the process, and this is not – this is not helpful.”

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