Last night the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office sent out an email to the counties providing more information on the 8th Circuit’s opinion.
Court of Appeals Opinion
Because we are getting a lot of questions about the U.S. Court of Appeals Eighth Circuit’s opinion issued last Thursday, I thought I would clarify the process you should follow.
Bottom line simple answer is the process you put in place prior to the opinion should be used with one major exception: ballots received after the 8 p.m. Election Day deadline need to be segregated. This means you should finish tabulating the ballots received on or before Nov. 3 first before you tabulate ABs/MBs postmarked on or before November 3, but received through November 10. Once all the ABs received on or before Nov. 3 are tabulated, you must segregate those ballots from the ones received November 4 – November 10.
Obviously it is really important you are date stamping the day the AB was received.
You then will tabulate the November 4 – November 10 ballots for all races. The court has not ordered anything except the segregation of ballots. And the particular lawsuit involved only the race for President/VP but again, the court did not order that the races on these ballots should not be tabulated.
The exact language from the opinion is: “Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon and his respective agents and all persons acting in concert with each or any of them are ordered to identify, segregate, and otherwise maintain and preserve all absentee ballots received after the deadlines set forth in Minn. Stat. § 203B.08, subd. 3, in a manner that would allow for their respective votes for presidential electors pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 208.04, subd. 1 (in effect for the President and Vice President of the United States) to be removed from vote totals in the event a final order is entered by a court of competent jurisdiction determining such votes to be invalid or unlawfully counted. The Secretary shall issue guidance to relevant local election officials to comply with the above instruction…”
All votes should be counted, including absentee and mail ballots postmarked on or before November 3 and received before 8 P.M. on November 10. You should not, however, separate the vote totals when updating your reports after your initial report Tuesday night. For example, if you process ballots on Wednesday or Thursday that came in on or before Election Day, as allowed by 2020 legislation, finish those ballots midday Thursday and proceed to then tally the segregated votes discussed at the beginning of this message, you should not report the two groups separately.
Attached is a letter from the director of the Driver’s and Vehicle Services division about extending the dates for expired DLs.
Good luck tomorrow.