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May 26, 2023
Primaries are just around the corner and voting by mail has never been more complicated in Fort Bend County.
After former President Donald Trump vilified mail-in voting – saying it was the reason the 2020 presidential election was rigged – the controversial elections bill (SB1) was implemented.
Since then it has been an uphill fight for mail-in voters, As of Feb. 8, more than 5,003 residents had applied for mail-in ballots, and the county had rejected 864 of them, said John Oldham, the county’s elections administrator, as reported by The Fort Bend Star.
“Implementation of Senate Bill 1 has added costs and inconvenience to the ballot by mail process,” Oldham said. “Unfortunately, our software was not set up to report rejections, so we have to manually count.”
Voting rights advocates argue that these new rules are an attempt to reduce turnout and muddle voting rights, while the majority of the GOP party argues it will make voting safer.
Fort Bend residents seem motivated to vote, just in the first two days of early voting they had already passed the number of voters in 2018.
“Some 7,342 voted in person, which was ahead of the 2018 pace, and the county has mailed out 5,518 ballots, of which 3,909 have been for voters in the Democratic primary,” Oldham said to The Fort Bend Star.