Colorado’s use of drop boxes and the timeline for sending ballots make the state more prepared to weather a postal service slowdown this election, Secretary of State Jena Griswold said Wednesday.
With budget cuts and other attacks on the U.S. Postal Service, Colorado’s election model is uniquely insulated to withstand any service disruptions,” Griswold’s office said in a statement.
“Ballots are sent to voters starting 25 days before Election Day and voters are reminded that they must return their ballot via drop box instead of the mail within eight days of the election.”
There will be between 330 and 350 ballot drop boxes available in November, a number that has increased by approximately 100 in the past two years. The federal CARES Act has provided money for additional drop boxes this year.
Griswold estimates that 75% of ballots come back via drop boxes as opposed to by mail. On Aug. 6, a bipartisan group of U.S. representatives wrote to President Donald Trump’s appointed postmaster general expressing concern that policy changes could delay mail voting in the general election as the COVID-19 pandemic.
In June, Trump’s reelection campaign sued Pennsylvania for its use of drop boxes in the state’s primary election, alleging that the equipment “sacrificed the sanctity of in-person voting at the altar of unmonitored mail-in voting and have exponentially enhanced the threat” of fraud.
Griswold says Colorado’s procedures, “they are done so at least every 24 hours by a team of bipartisan election judges who must maintain a detailed chain of custody log when transporting ballots between drop boxes and the central counting facility to ensure no ballots are removed or added.”