Advance voting requests soar in Johnson County ahead of primary

Johnson County advance voting 2020 August primary.jpeg
Johnson County advance voting ballots.jpeg
Posted at 9:38 PM, Jul 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-15 00:04:52-04

OLATHE, Kan. — Johnson County voters are turning to advance voting in droves, requesting more than 90,000 ballots for the upcoming Aug. 4 primary.

According to the Johnson County Election Office, the number of requests surpassed the total number of votes cast in the last three presidential primary elections for 2008, 2012, and 2016.

“It’s pretty incredible here in Johnson County,” Johnson County Election Office Commissioner Connie Schmidt said. “We’ve never had that large a number.”

Advance ballots will start to be mailed out on Wednesday, but voters can still request an advance voting ballot for the primary until 5 p.m. on July 28.

Once a ballot is filled out, voters have several options to return it to the Johnson County Election Office. It can be mailed, dropped off at the drop boxes outside of the Election Office or dropped off at a polling location during in-person advance voting, which begins Monday.

“The most important thing is to sign the outside of the ballot envelope and, if there’s more than one ballot envelope at your residence, be sure you have your ballot in your envelope and that you’ve signed the envelope addressed to you,” Schmidt said.

Once the Election Office receives advance ballots, they are counted. Each signature is confirmed and then the ballots are scanned to be electronically stored.

The ballots cannot be tabulated until polls close on Election Day.

“We just want (voters) to return their advance ballot by mail as soon as they get it or as quickly," Schmidt said. "Don’t wait until the last minute. That way we can have the flow of advance ballots coming in in a nice, steady stream."