MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Montgomery County Courthouse will be open on Saturday to allow more people to apply for and deliver their absentee ballots in person.
“We’re seeing historical numbers here in Montgomery County, and I’m sure across Alabama. I’ve already done close to 18,000 ballots here Montgomery County; we’re seeing more voters who are choosing to do in-person absentee voting,” Montgomery Circuit Clerk Gina Ishman explained. “We started this process September 9, and every day we have increased. Just yesterday, we did close to 700 voters who decided to come in person to do absentee voting. And we’ve seen numbers 500-600 daily that are coming into absentee vote. And then there’s voters who are still choosing to mail in their request for a ballot. And we’re still getting 300-400 requests in the mail. So there’s a big demand for voters to take advantage of the absentee voting process.”
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Secretary of State made it easy for anyone to vote absentee; check the box that reads, “I have a physical illness or infirmity." And to be clear, this is not a new process or procedure. Alabama only offers absentee voting before election day.
“Alabama doesn’t have early voting,” Ishman said. “But this is absentee voting where the voter is unable or unwilling to go to their polling place on November 3. This is an absentee ballot. That ballot is kept in a ballot vault until Election Day. So voters should anticipate when they come into the courthouse where they’re going to get a ballot and put it through the ballot tabulator as they would at their polling place. That ballot is kept in an affidavit envelope that the voter fills out. And we will witness and notarized that it was the voter who marked that ballot. So voters who come in person do receive their ballot, and they mark their ballot. But those ballots are not counted until Election Day.”
This Saturday is the last Saturday before the deadline to request an absentee ballot - October 29th. The last day to hand-deliver a completed absentee ballot is the day before the election - November 2nd.
The courthouse will be open from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday. It’s open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. during the week.