Expected wave of mail-in ballot requests still hasn’t arrived

DM

Elections Canada expected a wave of Canadians requesting mail-in ballots for the Sept. 20 federal election amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but so far, it’s been more akin to a ripple. The country’s non-partisan voting agency, which at one point estimated it would need to process as many as five million mail-in ballots, has so far only issued just over a tenth of that amount. As of Monday, with just two weeks left in the election campaign period, 547,391 voting kits have been sent out, with 133,277 having been returned. […] The number of voting kits issued is more than 10 times the approximately 50,000 mail-in ballots cast in the 2019 election, but still well short of a revised estimate of 2 million to 3 million Elections Canada projected in mid-August. “The important thing for us is to be prepared. We planned for high volumes to be sure we would be ready,” said Elections Canada spokesperson Matthew McKenna. “We still believe that voting in person during advance polls or on election day is the simplest, most efficient way to cast a ballot in this election, and we expect the majority of Canadians will choose one of these options.”

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