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PA Dept of State ensuring a safe election by educating public on mail-in and absentee ballots

Mail-in and absentee ballots will be counted until 5PM November 6th, three days after Election Day.

"It's not complicated, it's just critical because we want everybody's vote to count."

The House Democratic Policy Committee and Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar met Thursday to discuss the challenges remaining to make sure Pennsylvania is ready for the November election.

More than five weeks out, Pennsylvania has already surpassed the number of requested mail-in and absentee ballots by several hundred thousand, compared to the primaries in June.

"We've already seen 2.1 million Pennsylvanians apply for a mail-in or absentee ballot," Sec. Boockvar said.

The main focus turned to mail-in ballots after last week's ruling by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on a variety of issues, notably naked ballots.

"We achieved our goals on almost every claim that was heard. For this year only, if voters cast their ballot by November 3rd, as long as candidates receive that ballot by November 6th, it will be counted," Sec. Boockvar said.

"Ballots that don't include a secrecy envelope, the Supreme Court ruled may not be counted. We withdrew our guidance that was to the opposite effect and are now embarking on a major publication campaign to make sure every voter knows you need two envelopes - the inner secrecy envelope and the outer envelope with your voter declaration on it," Sec Boockvar said.

"It's not complicated, it's just critical because we want everybody's vote to count," Sec. Boockvar said.

Even in a COVID-19 year, the Department of State recommends that if you have an issue with a mail-in or absentee ballot, go ahead and visit your local election office.

You can find more information on mail-in ballots on our FOX43 Election Guide.