5 THINGS TO KNOW: How are provisional ballots counted in Oklahoma?
Feb 14, 2022
Oklahoma statute 26 O.S. § 7-116.1 details more provisional ballot laws.
1. How are provisional ballots counted?
Provisional ballots shall be segregated from the regular ballots cast in the precinct in the manner prescribed by the Secretary of the State Election Board and shall not be inserted in the precinct voting device. Information provided by a person who votes a provisional ballot shall be investigated by the secretary of the county election board after the election. A provisional ballot shall be counted only if it is cast in the precinct of the voter’s residence and if evidence of the provisional voter’s valid voter registration, or of the voter’s identity, is found, except a provisional ballot cast by a voter identified in Section 14-121 of this title shall be counted.
2. When are provisional counted?
No information concerning provisional ballots, except the number of provisional ballots cast in the county, shall be made public by any election official prior to 1 p.m. on Friday following the election. The county sheriff shall secure sealed ballot transfer cases containing provisional ballots that have been counted after 1 p.m. on Friday following the election until 5 p.m. on Tuesday next succeeding the election or, in the event a recount contest is filed, until such times as the transfer cases are delivered to the district courtroom.
3. What happens if provisionals aren't verified?
In the event that the secretary of any county election board is unable to complete the investigation and verification of provisional ballots by 1 p.m. on Friday following the election, the Secretary of the State Election Board shall be authorized to extend the period for the investigation and verification of provisional ballots.
4. Then what happens?
When such an extension is required by any county for a statewide election, the extension shall apply statewide. The Secretary shall promulgate rules establishing procedures for requesting and granting such extensions.
5. How long are provisional ballot materials retained?
All materials used for procuring and casting a provisional ballot shall be retained by the secretary of the county election board for a period of twenty-four (24) months after the day of the election.