Yes, No, Maybe - Voting by Mail and the Pandemic

Voting By Mail and the Pandemic

Received Mail Ballot Applications Have Been Processed.
Who Can Apply Now?

By David M. Smith, Collin County Democratic Primary Administrator

10 June 2020

Yes, No, Maybe - Voting by Mail and the Pandemic

During the past couple of months, the question of who can apply to vote by mail was changing almost daily. As of this writing, there have been six court decisions on this.

Three different courts issued rulings expanding vote by mail eligibility to virtually everyone. However, the most recent decisions by the Texas Supreme Court and a federal appeals court have us back to where we were before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you submitted an application to vote my mail which may or may not have hit the Collin County Elections Department on a day an “everyone can apply” order was in effect, don’t worry. The department has processed all applications received on all days and is now mailing ballots to all.

Before and during all the legal action the Collin County Elections Department has been following long-established procedure, in compliance with the law. They simply accept all completed applications from registered voters. If someone checks the disability box, they do no investigation. Per law, they accept the declaration of the voter and process the application, no questions asked. Thus, they have not been concerned about what legal interpretation of disability may have been in effect on a given day. Every registered voter who applied is getting a ballot.

And if you are 65 or better or have another pre-COVID-19 reason for voting by mail and have not yet applied, there is still time to do so. For how to vote by mail, please see our guide below.

Mail-in Ballot Example

Photo of sample ballot envelope

Step 1: Obtain, fill out, and return an application to vote by mail

Received by July 2

An application to vote by mail can be obtained on the Texas Democratic Party website txdp.cc/vbmapp. You can print the application yourself or have it mailed to you.

Because the signature on the application and on the ballot envelope (Step 2) must match, sign the application the same way you will later sign the ballot envelope.

Mail the signed application to:

Collin County Elections Department
2010 Redbud Blvd., Suite 102
McKinney, TX 75069

Step 2: Receive, fill out, and return the mail ballot

Postmarked by July 14 7:00 p.m.

Received by July 15 5:00 p.m.

The Collin County Elections Department will mail you a ballot. Fill out the ballot and place in the ballot envelope. You must sign the ballot envelope. Mail back the ballot envelope to the Collin County Elections Department.

NOTE: Different deadlines apply for Military and Overseas Voters, and special procedures apply for those who become hospitalized or suffer a death in the family after July 2.

For assistance please call our voter hotline at 469-609-0539 or email us at elections@collindemocrats.org.

More information at the Collin County Elections Department website.