Absentee voting begins for Georgia's Super Tuesday primary

Monday, Jan. 23, 2012 2:29 PM
Last updated 11:46 PM
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Absentee voting for the March 6 Super Tuesday presidential primary in Georgia has started.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney faces off with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich during a heated GOP presidential debate Monday at the University of South Florida in Tampa.  PAUL SANCYA/ASSOCIATED PRESS
PAUL SANCYA/ASSOCIATED PRESS
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney faces off with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich during a heated GOP presidential debate Monday at the University of South Florida in Tampa.

It began Saturday, and in-person advance voting begins Feb. 13. Absentee voters can request a ballot using a form available on the Georgia Secretary of State’s Web site or write their own letter, said Lynn Bailey, the executive director of the Richmond County Board of Elections.

“It’s definitely not too early for people to apply by mail,” she said. “It really is easy. You don’t have to have a reason to vote by mail. You don’t have to have an ID to vote by mail.”

Handwritten requests for absentee ballots should include sufficient information to identify the voter and the date of the election for which they want to vote absentee.

“We have, to date in Richmond County, issued 24 Democratic Party ballots and 47 Republican Party ballots,” Bailey said Monday.

In addition to the presidential preference primary, the March 6 ballot will include two referendum items for Richmond County. Voters will decide on Sunday package sales of beer, wine and distilled spirits.

The second item is the reimposition of a 1-cent sales tax for the Richmond County Board of Education.

WANT TO VOTE EARLY?

Request an absentee ballot through March 2. Apply using a form available at any county election office or on the Georgia Secretary of State’s Web site, www.sos.ga.gov.

Without the form, submit a request in writing including your name, address, date of birth, voter’s signature and party preference. Mail the request to the Board of Elections Office at 530 Greene St., Room 104, Augusta, GA 30901, fax to (706) 821-2814, or e-mail richmond
elections@augustaga.gov.

Comments (28) Add comment
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BamaMan
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BamaMan 01/23/12 - 03:47 pm
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What about Columbia County

What about Columbia County early voting?

raul
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raul 01/23/12 - 04:10 pm
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Kind of defeats the purpose

Kind of defeats the purpose of the Voter ID law, doesn't it?

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/23/12 - 04:25 pm
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Yes, the absentee voting

Yes, the absentee voting provisions circumvent the photo ID law for in-person voting in Georgia. That is what the legislature wanted.

However, following the twisted and absurd logic of the anti-photo ID crowd; if getting a photo ID is too complicated for minorities to figure out, then they can't figure out the complexities of absentee voting, either. So, either way, they won't vote.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 01/23/12 - 04:28 pm
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We could just outlaw all

We could just outlaw all forms of ID. Make the poll workers sit there blindfolded, have a mike that disguises your voice, so they couldn't tell anything about you. No discrimination that way.

Insider Information
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Insider Information 01/23/12 - 04:29 pm
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By the time March rolls

By the time March rolls around, will there be any candidates to vote on? The joys of living in Georgia. Three or four states choose who we get to vote for.

willie7
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willie7 01/23/12 - 05:00 pm
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Absentee balloting is where
Unpublished

Absentee balloting is where you have fraud. It is the favorite tool of Republicans.

willie7
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willie7 01/23/12 - 05:03 pm
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I have worked the polls and
Unpublished

I have worked the polls and low income and poorly educated Whites have trouble with photo ID too.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/23/12 - 05:08 pm
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Yeah, Willie, but the anti-ID

Yeah, Willie, but the anti-ID activists do not care about disenfranchising whites. All they talk about are "minorities."

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/23/12 - 05:11 pm
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Actually, Willie, where the

Actually, Willie, where the most fraud occurs is in the registration process. A clever person can register numerous times under different names and/or addresses. With no photo-ID required, that person can then vote numerous times. But if he has to produce a government-issued photo ID, the fraud is thwarted, or at least lessened.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 01/23/12 - 05:17 pm
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willie might want to Google

willie might want to Google "Absentee Ballot fraud democrats" before he makes accusations about Republican abuse.

Pu239
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Pu239 01/23/12 - 09:10 pm
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Remember! Vote Early! Vote
Unpublished

Remember! Vote Early! Vote Often!

rmwardsr
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rmwardsr 01/23/12 - 09:48 pm
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This is a very important

This is a very important election. All of my dead friends will be requesting absentee ballots, as well as my imaginary childhood friends. After all, they are "absentee", aren't they? No ID required, man this is going to be great. Hell, the Democrats were the ones who started this anti voter ID, so let it bite them where it will.

rmwardsr
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rmwardsr 01/23/12 - 09:53 pm
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Insider Information, I agree

Insider Information, I agree with you. Either party should be able to choose their candidate the same way we vote for a president. They should be given a campaign period, then have something similar to a Super Tuesday election, where all the states vote at once. It would probably cost the candidates a lot less in the long run.

Techfan
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Techfan 01/24/12 - 05:20 am
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"willie might want to Google

"willie might want to Google "Absentee Ballot fraud democrats" before he makes accusations about Republican abuse." WOW!!! 4 hits and one is from this comment. Maybe now there'll be 5.

justthefacts
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justthefacts 01/24/12 - 07:30 am
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Dishonesty doesn't become

Dishonesty doesn't become you.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 08:49 am
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Retired Army wrote: Why isn't

Retired Army wrote:

Why isn't a picture ID required with an absentee ballot?

The intended way to get an absentee ballot is to send a written notice to the Board of Elections office requesting a ballot. They send it to you by mail, you mark it up with your choices, sign it, and mail it back in.

Now, Army, would you want to send in your government-issued photo ID to the Board of Elections and trust them to get it back to you in a week or ten days by mail?

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 09:01 am
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Retired Army replied: Lamby

Retired Army replied:

Lamby darlin' that's a dodge of the question. I doubt anyone would want to send a photo ID to anyone let alone a gov't agency.

Okay, then why don't you think of a way to get an absentee ballot to a U.S. soldier in the Phillipines after that soldier has shown his military photo ID to the Board of Elections worker in Augusta? Let us know how such a system would work.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 01/24/12 - 10:13 am
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Seems to me that it's a

Seems to me that it's a matter of checks and balances. If the absentee ballots are sent to the commander in charge of the soldiers overseas, let the soldier request an absentee ballot through his commanding officer or an agency designated during election time. That soldier can then produce the military ID, receive his ballot, vote, seal it and send it back to the states.

allhans
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allhans 01/24/12 - 10:27 am
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Actually by mailing the

Actually by mailing the absentee ballot to you, after you have requested it, it is assumed that if you receive it then you are legitimate.
Some years ago you had to have a NP sign it but no longer..

allhans
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allhans 01/24/12 - 10:32 am
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Assuming voting laws haven't

Assuming voting laws haven't changed, absentee ballots are counted only if they would change the outcome of a race. If there is a difference of 1,000 votes between two candidates and only 800 absentee votes than you know that they won't make a difference...so counting them would be of no use.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 01/24/12 - 10:44 am
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Allhans, a notary public used

Allhans, a notary public used to be an important person. We had one in my neighborhood about two blocks over when I was growing up. I thought he had gone to college about 9 years to become one of those. He had this big sign in his yard. I think he could probably arrest you if he wanted. My Momma had to go there to get some papers signed once when Daddy had run off....again. He made her show all kinds of identification and pay him three dollars which was my school lunch money for a couple of weeks if you counted the extra milk.

allhans
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allhans 01/24/12 - 10:59 am
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I was a notary for 20 +

I was a notary for 20 + years ...only used it for business or an employee of the company. The employees understood that the document had to be signed in my presence and of course I didn't charge them a dime. Never made a penny from it.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 11:31 am
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Interesting proposal, ICL.

Interesting proposal, ICL. But think about it. In the first place you are imposing Georgia law upon a military officer located in a place other than Georgia. Sure, he might co-operate, but he doesn't have to. And there are 50 states; so the commanding officer would be burdened by the 50 different requirements.

And I used the military angle just to point out one absurdity of Retired Army's complaint. There are tens of thousands (maybe hundreds of thousands of people out of their state of residence on election day who are not military. They may be halfway across the country or halfway across the world when they request their absentee ballot. There is no feasible way to get them to show a picture ID to an election official.

Chillen
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Chillen 01/24/12 - 11:54 am
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No ID to vote absentee? Boy

No ID to vote absentee? Boy would I be mad if I showed up to vote and someone had already cast my ballot. I wonder how much of that goes on.

Never underestimate desperation. Democrats are being jailed all over the place for voter fraud in 2008. It WILL happen again in 2012. Count on it.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 12:11 pm
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Retired Army posted: So, in

Retired Army posted:

So, in effect what Little Lamb is saying is that it's fair and lawful for a voter to show his picture ID at their polling place, but we should make exception for absentee voters who could be anyone? Here again, that is in my mind discriminatory in the least.

It is an unfortunate loophole, but there is no practical way for absentees to show picture ID. The Georgia Supreme Court has upheld the law.

Fortunately, Georgia passed their voter ID requirements during the Bush regime. The Justice Department signed off on it. Now, under Obama, the Justice Department is nixing South Carolina's new picture ID law.

For the federal government to hold southern states hostage in their state election procedures because of slavery and Jim Crow is where the real discrimination lies.

allhans
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allhans 01/24/12 - 02:23 pm
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If you are a registered voter

If you are a registered voter then your name is in the computer. If you obtain an absentee ballot and you then go to the polling place to vote, when your name is checked against computer records it will show that you received an absentee ballot so therefore, you aren't allowed to vote. If you have a complaint, then the poll manager will handle the problem or you would be sent downtown. Since nothing is fail-proof, things can happen, but there is a very good system, with photo ID being used, set up to prevent fraud.
If you aren't on the computer, then you do a paper ballot and your vote will be counted only after your registration and ID is confirmed within a period of hours, etc.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 01/24/12 - 02:23 pm
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How the heck can we complain

How the heck can we complain about anybody who gave the government $3 million in taxes?

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 02:28 pm
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allhans described the process

allhans described the process correctly in those rare cases where a person got an absentee ballot by mail, and then for some reason did not mail it back in and instead showed up at the polls, absentee ballot in hand. Of course that person would have to show his ID at the polls.

But the normal procedure is for a person to get an absentee ballot (no ID required) by mail, mark it, then mail it back in. The photo ID is nowhere in the process.

allhans
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allhans 01/24/12 - 02:29 pm
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What the Justice Department

What the Justice Department is doing to SC is a shame. I can tell you from years of working the polls in Duval Co Fl and in GA that no one is turned away even if missing an ID. You are allowed a paper ballot and a number of hours to take your ID to the Bd of Elections downtown.
If you aren't registered however, that is another matter completely, it is your fault, since you don't need a photo ID to register.

Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 01/24/12 - 02:32 pm
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Now, try this (and, believe

Now, try this (and, believe me, it does happen): A person requests an absentee ballot by mail and is delivered one by mail. Then the person forgets all about it and the ballot gets stuffed in the magazine rack or in the newspapers in the hall. Suddenly it is election day and the person is in town after all, so he goes to the polls. Too bad. The poll worker looks up his name in the computer and the screen (instead of being orange) is gray with a big A beside the name. That means that the person was issued an absentee ballot. Since he did not bring it with him to the polls, he will not be allowed to vote at the polls.

Moral: if you request an absentee ballot, go ahead and mark it, sign it, and mail it back in.

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