More than 300,000 Nebraskans request mail-in primary ballots

April 19, 2020 GMT

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska’s primary election next month could see strong turnout if most people who requested ballots by mail return them in time.

Secretary of State Bob Evnen told the Omaha World-Herald that 340,000 Nebraskans had requested mail-in ballots as of Friday. Another 50,000 voters who live in rural counties where voting by mail is the only option will also receive mail-in ballots.

That total of 390,000 ballots is approaching Nebraska’s highest-turnout primary in 1972 when 413,015 people voted. The number of voters in Nebraska primary elections has only exceeded 400,000 five times in history.

Nebraska voters can request mail-in ballots from their county election officials until May 1. Those ballots must be returned before 8 p.m. on May 12, which is election day. Officials said more than 72,000 Nebraskans have already voted.


“What it tells me is that the mechanisms under law that we have in place today are being put to use effectively and successfully in the midst of the coronavirus event,” Evnen said.

Nebraska officials still plan to open the polls on May 12 for anyone who wants to vote in person. Election workers will be provided protective gear, including masks and gloves.