By MICHAEL WALTERThe Associated Press – MARTA, Ariz.
(AP) A state-appointed board of election commissioners approved a new voting system Thursday that was expected to increase the number of people eligible to vote in some Arizona counties from about 3.5 million to 6 million, but the vote count was delayed because of a number of glitches that made it difficult to accurately tally ballots.
The system allows people to cast a ballot with their smartphone in a touchscreen machine or in the polling place, and to check in at the polling location.
It also includes a separate form of absentee ballot.
Voters who want to vote early will have to make a separate trip to a polling location that does not allow them to vote by mail, which will also be delayed until the next election.
The new system is designed to improve voting by reducing the number who would need to travel for the voting process.
It will allow voters to cast ballots in person in Arizona counties with less than 3.3 million residents, about half of the state’s total population.
But it won’t cover the rest of the population.
Under the new system, which took effect on Friday, eligible voters can check in for a vote at a polling place that will allow them more time to cast the ballot.
They will be allowed to vote electronically through a new system that will be used in the next presidential election in 2020.
The process of selecting a new president and vice president was delayed by the September attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, in which four Americans were killed, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.
The U.N. Security Council condemned the attack and called on the U.K. and the U,S.
to launch a full investigation.
The state of Arizona is one of only three in the country that uses electronic voting, and it will be the first state to adopt a new method of voting.
The state is a major battleground state, with several counties and large cities including Phoenix, Tucson, Phoenix, Flagstaff and Chandler, that are heavily Democratic.
The board’s decision to delay the vote counting until the spring of 2020 was controversial.
It drew national attention when Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne announced he would sue the state over the delay.
In a statement, Horne said he “welcomes this move” and called it “a fair, rational and just way to protect Arizona voters and their rights.”
State officials also called for more time for voters to check-in at the voting site.
State elections director Chris Poteat told The Associated Press that the delay was necessary because of “the high volume of absentee ballots we are receiving in the coming weeks, which we will process and process again in the spring.”
Poteat said the state would not be able to make the changes in time for the 2020 election.
The delay is a setback for Democratic President Joe Biden, who had campaigned heavily on his promise to improve voter access, and Republican Secretary of State Michele Reagan, who has been criticized for her handling of the Benghazi attack.
A vote count in Tucson showed that the county had 1,829 absentee ballots cast.
The Associated, which has a joint-venture with the Arizona Republic, was unable to verify the number.
In Phoenix, the AP had counted 725 absentee ballots, but that number had not yet been updated by the Phoenix County Clerk.
Poteatt said in a statement that the state had been working to increase voting access since the attacks in Benghazi and the election was an opportunity to do that.
“We are going to continue to take all the necessary steps to ensure that our elections are secure,” he said.
Perez said in his statement that there was “no doubt” that Arizona would be one of the states to use electronic voting.
He said the changes would not have an impact on turnout because “electors will have the option to use an alternate method of casting their ballots and will be required to make an appointment with a voting center before they cast their ballots.”
In addition to Arizona, other states that have implemented electronic voting are Virginia, Texas, Pennsylvania, Arizona and Maryland.
In the United States, the last presidential election saw a surge in absentee ballots that had not been counted in the previous election.
Some election officials had blamed problems with a computer program that allowed voters to add absentee ballots to their ballots.