Clerk sued over troop ballots

Zeeland Township Clerk Marilyn Evink is among 24 city and township clerks being sued for failing to mail absentee ballots to military and overseas voters by the state's deadline.
Oct 20, 2012

Three absentee ballots requested by voters abroad were supposed to be sent by Sept. 22, according to a complaint filed by Secretary of State Ruth Johnson in Ottawa County Circuit Court last week.

The Secretary of State's Office requires ballots for overseas voters to be mailed at least 45 days in advance of Election Day.

Reached by phone Thursday, Evink said the ballots weren't mailed in time because her office has been overwhelmed in preparation for the Nov. 6 election.

Evink said the three ballots were mailed Sept. 26 and that, as a result of the complaint, the clerk's office will accept those ballots up to four days late.

"It's all been settled," she said.

The complaint filed in Circuit Court asks Judge Ed Post to extend the counting deadline for overseas voters' ballots by the number of days the ballots were delayed.

To see the lawsuit, click the Related File below.

In all, 38 overseas voters' ballots for the Nov. 6 election were mailed late in 24 jurisdictions, according to the Secretary of State's Office.

"The men and women who put their lives on the line to defend our freedoms must be able to participate in our democracy," Johnson said.

— From The Holland Sentinel


Tri-cities realist

Inexcusable. She should resign or be fired. It's not like the election "snuck up" on her. How pathetic.


How interesting. One wonders what way she leans politically as I don't pay to Zeeland politics. Either way I agree TCR, fire her!


Although I agree the failure was inexcusable, and that such clerks should insure that military ballots are among the first issues to be handled, it seems that only three ballots were impacted and that the matter was addressed quickly and fairly. According to Holland election results, Ms. Evink is a republican, so I don't see any of the partisan issues that we have seen in other states in this instance. One must believe that this will not happen again, so I believe "No Harm No Foul" is apt.

Tri-cities realist

Perhaps Vlad. Either way, anytime that our brave soldiers are made to feel that their votes won't be counted, disturbs me. Thankfully, their votes WILL be counted.


Hmmm, so if it was only three ballots and the issue was addressed, why is she being sued? Something is missing here?

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