The Bloomington Election Commission says it will seek a judge’s approval of its plan to fix a ballot error that has temporarily halted early voting in the city.
Two judicial retention questions were mistakenly left off the ballot as early voting and vote-by-mail began Sept. 24. BEC halted early voting Thursday after discovering the error.
About 9,500 people—1,500 early voters, the rest vote-by-mail—are impacted, said BEC Executive Director Tim Mitchell. There are around 51,000 registered voters in Bloomington.
A remedy is still being developed, but Mitchell said it’s likely that those voters will receive some sort of additional mini-ballot with only the two missing judicial retention questions on it.
Any ballot cast will be counted, he said. If people elect not to send back that extra mini-ballot, it will be like they just skipped the question, Mitchell said.
“It’s obviously our mistake. We own that,” Mitchell said. “But we are not going to prevent any voter from having the opportunity to cast a vote in that race. That’s the bottom line of what we’re gonna do.”
The BEC will soon seek approval from the courts for its plan, given the unusual situation, he said.
“If you’re gonna do anything outside of what the election code explicitly says, you’re wise to get judicial relief,” Mitchell said.
Early voting is halted only for Bloomington voters. Early voting remains open for people who live elsewhere in McLean County.
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