October 25, 2012 at 8:52 am EST | by Michael K. Lavers
Maryland voters receive incomplete absentee ballots
Maryland Marriage Alliance, same sex marriage, gay marriage, gay news Washington Blade

Voters in two Maryland counties received absentee ballots without referendum questions on same-sex marriage and other issues. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Maryland election officials continue to investigate how voters in Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties received absentee ballots that did not include referendum questions.

Maryland State Board of Elections Deputy Administrator Ross Goldstein told the Washington Blade that 15 people received the ballots without the second page that includes Question 6, which asks voters whether they support the state’s same-sex marriage law. NBC 4 first reported the story late on Tuesday after a voter contacted the D.C. television station.

“The second card got left out of those 15 people,” said Goldstein.

Goldstein further categorized the distribution of the incomplete absentee ballots as an “error.” Governor Martin O’Malley said in a statement that voters who have received absentee ballots should make sure they are complete.

“Residents who have requested an absentee ballot should check to make certain they have a complete ballot with a second page that includes Questions 4-7, as well as any of the local county-related questions,” he said.

Josh Levin, campaign manager of Marylanders for Marriage Equality, said his group is “looking into this matter and taking it seriously.”

“Every registered voter must have the same opportunity to participate in the electoral process,” he said in a statement. “We’re confident the board of elections will get to the bottom of this quickly and resolve it.”

The Maryland Marriage Alliance, which opposes the state’s same-sex marriage law, did not immediately return the Blade’s request for comment.

Goldstein urged voters who received an incomplete absentee ballot to call 1-800-222-8683 to request a new and complete one.

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

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