INFORMATION FROM YOUR TOWNSHIP CLERK
Another Election Update....News You Can
received a couple calls from people who have received their absent voter ballot and are confused about the 'straight ticket' voting options. I thought it best to provide the information provided to
us Clerks...it is lengthy - but gives great descriptions of the options available for marking your ballot.
you would like to vote for a write-in candidate, the candidate MUST have declared their intent to run as a write-in by Oct 23 at 4pm. If not, the write-in is
have questions, you can always call me at 269-674-4255, Ext 102 or my cell at 269-655-4458.
OPTIONS FOR STRAIGHT TICKET, SPLIT TICKET AND MIXED TICKET VOTING
is one of a few states that allow voters to vote “straight ticket” in a general election, which means voters may fill in one oval or box next to a party name to cast a vote for every candidate of
that political party. Michigan also allows for voters to select the straight party option but then cast votes for individual candidates of a different party (“split ticket”). Because voters have
different ballot marking options, it is critical to provide appropriate and accurate ballot marking instructions with all absent voter ballots and on all ballot secrecy sleeves in the polling place.
In the November Election, voters have the following options:
“Straight Ticket” Voting: Voters may vote in the straight party race and select the party of their choosing - this will award
votes up to the maximum allowed (and maximum candidates available) for each partisan race for the voter’s chosen party. The candidates receive “indirect votes” based on the voter’s single
straight-party ballot selection. For example: Casting a vote for the Ice Cream Party in the straight party race will indirectly cast a vote for all candidates running under that party to the maximum
allowed for each race in which the party is participating. If there are any races in which the Ice Cream Party is not participating, no
votes will be cast in that race. If the voter wishes to vote in any non-partisan races and proposals, the voter must make selections in these races separately.
“Split Ticket” Voting: Voters may vote in the straight party race and select the party of their choosing, but then vote
directly in an individual race (or multiple individual races) by directly voting for a candidate from a different party, voting for a candidate with no party affiliation, or casting a write-in vote.
As with straight ticket voting, voting in the straight party race will indirectly cast a vote for all candidates running under that party to the maximum allowed for each race in which the party is
participating, except where the voter overrides an indirect vote by a casting direct vote for a candidate of a different party, a candidate
with no party affiliation, or a write-in vote. For example: If a voter casts a straight party vote for the Ice Cream Party but directly casts a vote for one individual candidate of the Pie Party, the
straight party vote will indirectly cast a vote for all candidates running under the Ice Cream Party to the maximum allowed for each race in which the Ice Cream Party is participating, except for the
one race in which the voter cast a vote for the Pie Party candidate. If there are any races in which the Ice Cream Party is not participating, no votes will be cast in that race if no direct vote for
another candidate is made. If the voter wishes to vote in any non-partisan races and proposals, the voter must make selections in these races separately.
“Mixed Ticket” Voting: Voters may decline to vote in the straight party race and directly select candidates of their choice
from any party (or no party affiliation and write-ins) up to the maximum allowed for each race.
Other Notes: If a voter selects the “straight party” race but then votes for individual candidates of the same party, the
vote for those individual candidates will still count, and will only count once. If a voter wishes to vote for a write-in candidate (whether or not they select the straight party option), the voter
must fill out the oval for write-in candidate and write the name or it will be an invalid write-in and will not be counted.
ELECTION UPDATE: Good News/Bad News
The good news is absent voter ballots were mailed on Friday, September 25, 2020. The bad news is I later found out our postmaster received
a directive that ALL ballots must go through centralized processing in Grand Rapids. I called and talked to the USPS/Election coordinator to find out why we can not have our local mail hand canceled.
They said election ballots are prioritized and must go through centralized processing for 'tracking.' I asked HOW they are tracked but didn't get a clear answer. They said they will send
I highly recommend that after you complete your ballot, drop it off at our office. You can bring in OR use our secure
drop box outside our office door located at 411 N Paw Paw St.
Anyone can receive an absent ballot. You no longer have to give a reason. If you are not on the Permanent AV list and would like to receive an AV Ballot application for each election (now and in
the future), the request can be picked up at the new Town Hall or downloaded from the above link. Complete the request and drop off or mail to me at the address shown.
If you do not want to be on the permanent list but wish an AV ballot for the November 3, 2020 General Election, you can request one at the Township Office or call to have an application mailed
to you. You MUST complete the form, sign and return the application to receive an AV ballot.
If you requested a November ballot with your March Presidential Primary or the August Primary AV application, you do NOT need to re-request the November ballot. We will automatically send
it to you once they are available in late September.
After Proposal 3 was passed in 2018, a number of changes have occurred. One is that your AV ballot envelopes have significantly changed. They are now white/blue for the outgoing envelope and
white/green for the return envelope. If you get this in the mail, PLEASE do not discard...it is your ballot! Make sure to read ALL the instructions, as they have changed. You MUST sign and date
the outside of the redesigned return envelope. Drop off in the office lobby, outdoor secure drop box or mail back.
If you are a citizen and resident of Lawrence Township and are not registered to vote, you can do so at any Secretary of State office or online up to 15 days prior to an election. After that,
you must register in person at the Lawrence Township offices located at 411 N Paw Paw St, Lawrence.
In-person voting will take place on Tuesday, November 3, 2020 from 7am - 8pm. Voters are requested to wear a face mask and observe the 6' social distancing recommendations, unless you are
in a voting booth.
The pens/pencils, ballot secrecy folders, booths, etc. will be sanitized between each voter. The door handles, etc. will be sanitized regularly. Hand sanitizer will be available
throughout the voting precinct.
If you have ANY questions, don't hesitate to call the office at 269-674-4255 or my cell at 269-655-4458.