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Statement by Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea on Elections Postcards sent by United States Postal Service

This weekend, Rhode Islanders received a national postcard from the United States Postal Service regarding voting by mail. Every state has different election laws and policies.

Despite knowing this, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy made the unfortunate decision to send a single postcard to all states regarding voting by mail. Thus, the postcard contributes misinformation to the national conversation on this important election.

I want to make sure that Rhode Island voters have the correct information for voting with a mail ballot: If you choose to vote from home, you must request a mail ballot at least 21 days before an election. That means that Rhode Island voters have until October 13 to request a mail ballot to vote from home.

My office sends all mail ballots with postage paid return envelopes. You do not need to find postage stamps to send back your ballot. If you chose to use the U.S. Postal Service to return your ballot, put it in the mail by October 27.

Rhode Island voters also have the option of using elections-only drop boxes available throughout the state. The Rhode Island Board of Elections is in the process of installing secure drop boxes in every community as an option for returning your mail ballot.

In order for your mail ballot to be counted it needs to be at the Board of Elections or one of the drop boxes by 8pm on November 3rd.

This situation gives me the opportunity to remind Rhode Island voters that you should make your election officials your trusted sources of information this year. Go to or call 2-1-1 with any questions about your safe and secure voting options.


Related links

  • Department or agency: Office of the Secretary of State
  • Online:
  • Release date: 09-13-2020

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