Missoula County Elections Administrator Favors All Mail General Election
After the successful mail in primary election in June, Missoula County Elections Administrator Bradley Seaman said Governor Steve Bullock’s order to give counties the option of either a mail in or polling place election provides a choice for each county.
“I really liked the governor's directive because it does not mandate the whole state,” said Seaman. “It lets counties decide what is best for them because it is a lot different for our services here in Missoula county than small eastern Montana counties with a fraction of the number of voters from us. So I do appreciate the fact that it gave each individual county the option.”
Seaman said there were problems during the primary that the county won’t have for the all mail general election.
“We have a clear path moving forward now,” he said. “We can let voters know what the issues are and how we will proceed. We had confusion from voters about after hours ballot drop boxes, but because this will be an all mail election they are prohibited and we must be a manned place of deposit with two election judges.”
Seaman responded to a question about the issue that all mail elections are more susceptible to fraud.
“We have a lot of safeguards in place in the state of Montana,” he said. “In Missoula County we work hard from our ballot stock to our signature verification processes to our voter database, which ensures that voters can't have two ballots active and our processes for notifying the voter if they've forgotten to sign, the signature doesn't match what's on file.”
Seaman provided the date on which ballots will be mailed to voters throughout the state.
“The mail date for this election is going to be October ninth,” she said. “The nice thing about the all mail election is that is in a few days after October 9, if you haven't seen your ballot, you can check the My Voter page dot com. It'll tell you if you got a ballot and where your ballot was sent. Plus, you can be very proactive and make sure that you voted well ahead of time and not waiting until Election Day.”
Missoula County has chosen to have a mail-in only general election in November.