Those with ballots have until April 13 to return them

A federal judge on Thursday issued an order giving voters an additional six days to submit absentee ballots but did not postpone the Tuesday, April 7, election.

According to the Associated Press, U.S. District Court Judge William Conley’s order effectively extends the election by nearly a week.

However, that is only for voters who have obtained absentee ballots. In his ruling, Conley ordered the deadline for requesting ballots from municipal clerks be extended until 5 p.m. Friday, April 3.

Requests for absentee ballots can be made by email directly to local clerks or through the website Voters must provide a photo of their driver’s license or other valid identification card to receive a ballot if they don’t already have ID on file with the clerk’s office.

Voter’s then have until 4 p.m. Monday, April 13, to submit their ballots to their local clerk’s offices, according to the AP. Mailed ballots must be received by the clerk prior to the deadline.

The absentee ballot extension should give voters concerned about the spread of coronavirus the option of avoiding in-person voting on Election Day. It also gives clerks additional time to process the crush of absentee ballots that have been encouraged for the past three weeks by officials at all levels.

Readers with specific questions regarding procedures in their communities should contact their municipal clerk’s office.

Conley issued his order Thursday, one day after holding a hearing in which he chastised Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and Republican legislative leaders Sen. Scott Fitzgerald and Rep. Robin Vos for not postponing the election so as to not expose voters and poll worker to the threat of coronavirus, according to the AP.

Conley said he did not have the authority to postpone the election.


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