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New Virginia Agreement Adds Backup Procedures To Absentee Ballots

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In Virginia, officials have agreed to take steps to ensure that members of the military who reside in Virginia and serve overseas can cast their ballots in federal elections.

The Justice Department says Virginia officials have agreed to take the necessary steps to fix the state’s absentee ballot problem.

The agreement, filed in federal court in Richmond, concludes a lawsuit brought by Republican John McCain, during the 2008 election. The Justice Department later replaced McCain’s campaign as the plaintiff in the case.

The suit claimed that absentee ballots weren’t mailed to members of the military serving outside Virginia in time to be counted in the November 3 election. A judge ruled last year that Virginia violated the overseas voter’s rights.

The new agreement would provide training, monitoring, reporting and back up procedures to ensure that absentee ballots are transmitted no later than 45 days before a federal election.

The agreement still has to be approved by the court.

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