Still Confusion Over Linn County Ballots

Linn County Auditor Joel Miller says he is still receiving sample ballots his office sent out recently for informational purposes.

The mailers also included an absentee ballot request form, an addressed envelope, and a letter noting “this ballot cannot be used for voting, ” but hundreds of people have filled them out and sent them in — creating a concern those people think they’ve voted when they have not.

Some Linn County Supervisors were visibly upset at Wednesday’s meeting as they discussed the rising number of filled out sample ballots continuing to be sent back to the Auditor’s office.

No action was taken by the Supervisors, but many expressed concerns over how auditor Joel Miller is handling the situation. The Auditor’s office tells our coverage partner, KCRG, that at last count, they’ve received a total of 750 sample ballots back. Those who sent in sample ballots and provided a return address have been sent back an additional mailer informing them they had not sent in a real ballot.  Supervisors invited Miller to the meeting to tell them where the current number of sample ballots received stands – however, Miller was a no show.

Some believe the steps the Linn County Auditor’s office has taken do not go far enough. Earlier this week, in an unprecedented move, the party chairs of Linn County Democrats, Republicans, and Libertarians issued a joint statement criticizing Miller for “not taking sufficient action to contact the individuals” who sent in sample ballots. Chair of the Linn County Democrats Brett Nilles (Nill-es) shared his concerns.

Nilles believes the only way to ensure there is no more confusion among those who sent in sample ballots is to contact them personally with a phone call – or if needed, a home visit. Miller believes that is impractical.

If you’re a Linn County resident and you think you may have sent in a sample ballot by mistake, the Auditor’s office says you can call them at 319-892-5300.