Lawsuit seeks time to correct rejected ballots in Georgia primary

A lawsuit filed Friday seeks to give Georgia voters more time to correct problems with rejected absentee or provisional ballots.

The emergency motion by the Democratic Party of Georgia said many voters won't be notified whether their ballots were rejected until it's too late. Counties are still counting tens of thousands of absentee ballots.

The normal deadline to verify ballot discrepancies, such as signature mismatches or missing photo ID, is three days after Tuesday’s election.

"Voters deserve to know that their vote is counted and have the chance to correct any errors," said Democratic Party of Georgia Chairwoman Nikema Williams. "Georgians still don't know whether their vote was counted in this primary."

The case, filed in Fulton County Superior Court, asks a judge to require county election officials to notify voters within one business day after their ballots are rejected, and then give them until June 19 to submit information such as photo ID to verify their ballots.

So far, just 249 ballots have been rejected because of missing or invalid signatures, according to election data through Thursday. An additional 1,152 absentee ballots were rejected because county election officials received them after election day.

Those numbers are certain to grow as more ballots are counted.

In all, more than 1.1 million voters returned absentee ballots before polls closed Tuesday.

settlement with the Democratic Party in March required election officials to contact voters whose ballots were rejected within one business day, but that case didn't extend deadlines to accommodate slow ballot counting.

During the 2018 general election, election officials threw out about 3% of absentee ballots.