Early voting for Vermont primaries to begin June 26, state sees big jump in mail-in requests

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Early voting in the Aug.11 Vermont Statewide Primaries will begin June 26, according to Secretary of State Jim Condos. 

Anxieties have been high nationwide about upcoming elections, as polling locations get reduced, debates over mail in ballots carry out and voters have concerns about crowded public locations like polls. In Vermont, a 45-day period beginning this Friday will allow any Vermonter to request a mail in ballot without providing a reason.

“Early voting, including no-excuse absentee voting by mail, provides critical access to the ballot box for voters unable to vote in-person at the polls on Election Day,” Condos said in a statement. “Voting early or by mail has taken on an increased importance during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

More: Voting in South Burlington during coronavirus pandemic

More: How will we exercise our vote during the pandemic? Essex Junction faces that question

The Secretary of State’s Office will send all registered voters in Vermont a postcard with information about requesting a ballot, including a pre-paid and pre-addressed tear-off piece that voters can send in to make that request. They can also make the request online, by phone, email, writing or in person with their Town Clerk.

The state has seen seven times the number of mail in ballot requests this election cycle than at this date 2018. 

In Vermont, voters are not required to be registered with a major party to participate in primaries. For mail in ballots, voters receive the Democratic, Republican and Progressive ballots in the mail, fill out the one they choose to, and mail back the other two blank ballots as well.

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