Could early voting come to Alabama?

Could we see early in-person voting in Alabama?

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Hundreds of people took advantage of the first-ever opportunity to vote absentee in person this Saturday at the Jefferson County Courthouse as well as the Bessemer cut-off location.

“Absentee in person” sounds kind of funny, but it’s popular among those who would rather hand their ballot in than send it in the mail.

Early-voting of some kind is available in 43 states this year, according to election data. This includes Alabama, which does allow you to submit your absentee ballot in person. You can even get the two required signatures right there at the courthouse, making it a one-stop shop. This year, it’s more popular because people are able to cite health concerns pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic, but true early voting requires “no excuse.”

Secretary of State John Merrill says that’s not currently in the works.

“Those decisions are left up to the Alabama legislature and the conversation about early in person voting, or other administrative law changes regarding the election will be debated by the Alabama legislature in 2021 and beyond,” he said Friday. The courthouses will be open again this Saturday for absentee in person voting.

Copyright 2020 WBRC. All rights reserved.