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Sat Oct 3, 2020, 04:27 AM

Judge approves NC absentee ballot lawsuit settlement - but another could block it

A Wake County Superior Court judge approved the settlement of a lawsuit that would change how absentee ballots are handled in North Carolina for the 2020 election.

Wake County Superior Court Judge Bryan Collins said Friday afternoon that the settlement was fair and reasonable and not illegal or a product of collusion. But a federal judge held a hearing later Friday in a lawsuit seeking to block the settlement, and he said he’ll issue a ruling “in due course.”

Collins said the agreement was a compromise between two parties — the State Board of Elections and a political group representing retirees that filed suit Aug. 18 over the state’s various rules for mail-in voting.

The agreement would allow the board of elections to accept mail-in ballots up to nine days after the general election, as long as they are postmarked before 5 p.m. Election Day, Nov. 3.

The settlement also would allow North Carolina voters who are missing a witness signature or address on their mail-in ballot to fix the problem without filling out a new ballot.


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