LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – With 20 days to go until the Michigan primary election, 1.03 million Michiganders have requested an absentee ballot to vote in the August 2nd primary.

The residents of Detroit’s Wayne County have returned 42,186 of those ballots and Grand Rapids’ Kent County has returned 16,361.

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Michigan’s Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson sent out a press release about early voting absentee ballot request information on Tuesday, citing that we are ahead of the number of absentee ballots requested at this time in 2018 by almost 484,000.

After the passage of the state’s ballot proposal 18-3, all eligible and registered Michigan voters can now request an absentee voter ballot without providing a reason.

Signatures on absentee ballot requests will be checked against voter registration records before a ballot is issued as well as checking voter registration. The signature on the return envelope of the ballot mailed in must also match the signature on file with the state.

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And yes, there are still drop boxes around the state. According to a report from Bridge Michigan in 2021, there were 1100 voter drop boxes in the state at the time.

In 2020, legislation was passed in Michigan to provide for drop box security in the state.

Unless a drop box was ordered or installed in a township before October 1st, 2020, drop boxes must be securely locked and designed to prevent the removal of the drop box from its location.

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If the drop box is outside, it must be securely locked and bolted to the ground or a stationary object, the area must be well-lit with good visibility and there must be video monitoring of the drop box.