NEW MEXICO: SECURE VOTE BY MAIL ELECTIONS IN 2020

A GUIDE TO BEST PRACTICES FOR NEW MEXICO ELECTIONS OFFICIALS

ABOUT THIS RESOURCE

Sightline’s state-by-state guides are designed to give local election officials and legislators the information they need to identify and take the most important steps to get ready for November. Each set of state-specific resources includes best practices and established models from around the country, including practical nuts and bolts advice for clerks, materials from election administrators with experience conducting all mail elections, and information about vendors and costs.

How NEW MEXICO is prepared for Vote By Mail

  • Provides a postage-prepaid return envelope for mailed ballots.
  • Requires ballot tracking.
  • Allows any voter to request an absentee ballot.
  • Is a member of the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC).
  • Uses voters’ signatures to verify ballots.
  • Allows county clerks to start processing ballots at least five days before Election Day.
  • Allows voters to register and request an absentee ballot online.
  • Allows early in-person voting starting three weeks before Election Day.

RECOMMENDED STEPS FOR SECURE ELECTIONS

Within each section, recommendations are arranged roughly in order of importance and ease of implementation.

For Local Election Officials
  • Coordinate with USPS.
  • Design ballots and envelopes that are easy to use.
  • Implement robust signature verification.
  • Provide secure drop boxes.
  • Provide election day voting centers for in-person voting.
  • Consider using a professional printer and sorter.
  • Count ballots at a centralized, secure facility.
  • Invest in high-speed centralized equipment.
FOR SECRETARIES OF STATE
  • Mail absentee application forms to every registered voter.
  • Implement a formal notify and cure process.
For Lawmakers
  • Account for voters with non-traditional addresses.
  • Give voters a “single sign-up” option to permanently receive mailed-out ballots.
  • Allow counties to accept ballots postmarked on election day.
  • Allow voters to request a replacement ballot online.
  • Allow community organizations to help collect and deliver voted, sealed ballots.
  • Automatically register voters and update their addresses.

Download the full New Mexico action packet, with detailed information for each recommendation.

New Mexico's Grade for Vote By Mail preparedness = B

Our grading system: We evaluated each state on 16 factors, covering access, administration efficiency, security, and infrastructure.

Contact us

We welcome your questions and feedback. Email Kristin Eberhard, director of Sightline’s Democracy research program.

Photos: TANNEN MAURY/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock. Wisconsin primary election proceeds despite Coronavirus Covid-19 in April, 2020. A shortage of poll workers and social distancing precautions left Milwaukee with only a few polls open resulting in long lines. Photo by CRAIG LASSIG/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock. City employee Bryan Watson (R) directs voters to the proper line while maintaining social distancing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic to vote in Wisconsin's primary in Hudson, Wisconsin USA, 07 April 2020. After an attempt by Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers to delay the election because of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 which causes the Covid-19 disease, both the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the US Supreme Court ruled that the election should proceed as scheduled. A shortage of poll workers has left the city with only a few polls open resulting in long lines. Wisconsin Primary, Hudson, USA - 07 Apr 2020.