Voter confusion, ballot problems remain ahead of Kentucky’s primary election

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Some Louisville voters received ballots for the June 23 primary election opposite of their party’s registration, the Jefferson County Clerk’s Office confirmed to WDRB News.

In Kentucky primaries, a voter can only cast a ballot for the party they’re registered with.

“Shock, total shock — like this was not mine,” Andrea Brewer-Hopson said when she received a Republican ticket in the mail this week. “I was taken back, because this is not what I wanted to see. This is not the ballot of hope.”

A longtime registered Democrat, Brewer-Hopson said she checked her voter registration online with the Kentucky State Board of Elections, and it confirmed her party affiliation.

“It’s possible they got the wrong ballot, when there’s over 2,200 different ballot styles and there are two ballots sitting next to each other one is a Republican and the other is Democrat,” said Nore Ghibaudy, a spokesman for the Jefferson County Clerk’s Office. “You’ve got to remember this is a very unique situation. We have sent out over 200,000 ballots in a short period of time working 24 hours a day seven days a week.”

It’s unclear how many people received the wrong party affiliated ballot by mistake. Anyone who received a ballot opposite of their registration can exchange it before Election Day at the State Board of Elections’ office off Ormsby Avenue in Louisville, Ghibaudy said.

Confirm your registration beforehand, though.

“Often times, people think they’re of one party but they’re registered another,” Ghibaudy said.

This mistake follows news of a computer coding error that sent out thousands of absentee ballots statewide with the wrong middle initial on voters’ names. For some, the error is hurting voter confidence.

“They decided, well, they didn’t want to do the ballot they just wanted to come in and vote in person,” Hardin County Clerk Debbie Donnelly said. “If you got that absentee ballot, you should go ahead and use it, but if someone insists we’re going to take care of the voter.”

Donnelley and Henry County Clerk Shanda Archer both confirmed to WDRB News that they would allow voters to surrender their absentee ballots if they bring it to the polls and vote in person.

A day-of absentee-to-in-person voting switch will not be accommodated in Jefferson County, said Ghibaudy, who explained that the switch would be hard to audit due to the number of absentee ballots in circulation in Louisville.

“If you were to come in on a normal Election Day any other year and you walked in with the ballot you asked for by mail, they’re going to tell you to fill out your ballot and take it to a mail box,” Ghibaudy said.

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