Governor announces NJ’s first Vote by Mail election

In a news conference today, Governor Murphy announced that, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the July 7 primary election will be a primarily vote-by-mail election.

Murphy said that while each county will ensure a limited number of in-person polling places will be open, voters will be encouraged to vote by mail.

All unaffiliated and inactive voters must apply for a vote-by-mail ballot and will receive a postage-paid, application in the mail. Voters also can download the application here.

However, Murphy said that people who are currently registered to vote as either a Democrat or a Republican will not have to send in an application; they will simply receive the postage-paid vote-by-mail ballot in the mail without applying first.

Under New Jersey vote-by-mail rules, ballots usually must be received within 48 hours of the close of polls on election day; however, Murphy stated today that that deadline will be extended in the primary to seven days from the close of polls on election day.

Murphy assured the public that every vote will be counted. “No one should have to choose between their health and exercising their right to vote,” he said.

In other announcements, Murphy said that his administration is committing $50 million in federal CARES Act funding to directly support small businesses impacted by COVID-19. He said: “Our small businesses are the heart of our economy. We will use this federal funding to help them make it through and thrive again”

Murphy also announced that he will sign an executive order today to allow for the resumption of elective surgical and other invasive procedures effective May 26.

You can watch the briefing here

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