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SB 184 — Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot

by Senators Evers and Gaetz

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Ethics and Elections Committee (EE)

The bill eliminates the restriction that a Federal Write?In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) can only be used for state and local elections involving two or more candidates. This allows absent uniformed services and overseas voters to use an FWAB as a “back-up” ballot for all federal, state, and local elections — including judicial retention elections and ballot questions.

The bill also delays the canvassing of an FWAB until 10 days after the presidential preference primary or general election. This will allow the voter’s official absentee ballot to be canvassed (in lieu of an FWAB) if it is received during that 10-day window.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2015.

Vote: Senate 37-0; House 118-0