ATLANTA — With nearly one month left until the presidential election – there is a massive push get as many voters registered as possible.
Part of that effort has been mailers, urging people to register and request an absentee ballot. They are coming from third-party organizations and not from the state or counties themselves. Many have wondered if they are legal.
11Alive's VERIFY team is getting you answers.
Are mailers legal and can you legitimately request a ballot this way?
It's verified, the absentee voting mailers are legal, but to make sure your vote counts, skip third parties and go through the state’s official portal.
WHAT WE FOUND
Our VERIFY team went straight to the Georgia Secretary of State's office.
We spoke with the Statewide Voting Systems Implementation Manager, Gabriel Sterling. He said, it's definitely legal.
"We have a first amendment in this country that allows people to communicate especially in the times of politics," he explained. "So they are allowed to try to influence your vote.
So yes, third party organizations are allowed to send you mailers and you can use them to request a ballot. But to make sure your vote counts, look over what was sent to you to make sure when you mail in the application, it’s going back to election officials.
"Make sure that if you see one, the return address is going to your county register office and not to that 3rd party group," Sterling said
And to avoid any uncertainty when it comes to your vote, Sterling advises skipping the third party all together.
"Here's my best suggestion, don't go through the third party, especially if you're sending it back to the third party themselves," he said. "Because you do not know what happens then."
Instead, you can go directly to the Secretary of State’s portal to request a ballot.
"That will give you the most transparency and the most comfort that your vote's being counted properly," Sterling said.
Here’s how to do it.
Visit the state's My Voter Page website and from there, fill in your name, county and date of birth.
On this page you can change your voter information, get directions to your polling place, or request an absentee ballot application.
Once you’ve received the absentee ballot and submitted it, you can track it.