State hoping to go to 'vote by mail' in the primary | Prairie Public Broadcasting

State hoping to go to 'vote by mail' in the primary

Mar 27, 2020

ND Secretary of State Al Jaeger at Gov. Burgum's daily COVID-19 briefing.
Credit Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

North Dakota will be moving toward “mail ballots” for the June primary, because of the COVID-19 virus.

Gov. Doug Burgum signed an executive order waiving the requirement that counties must have at least one polling place open. He said that gives counties the opportunity to conduct the election completely by mail.

"In many parts of the state, the people that volunteer to work at those polling locations migt fit into the  age category of vulnerable adults, that we're trying to protect," Burgum said. "So, we're doing this, thinking about not only the voters, but the poll workers."

Secretary of State Al Jaeger said 33 of the state’s 53 counties already are doing vote by mail. He said "vote by mail" is a county option, but he hopes the other counties will take a serious look at it.

"The main thing for the voters is, yes, we won't have normal polling locations," Jaeger said. "But you will have the opportunity to cast that vote."

Jaeger said the primary is when most local government leaders are elected – so it is important.