34-1003. Issuance of absentee ballot. (1) Upon receipt of an application for an absent elector’s ballot within the proper time, the county clerk receiving it shall examine the records of the county clerk’s office to ascertain whether or not such applicant is registered and lawfully entitled to vote as requested and, if found to be so, the elector shall arrange for the applicant to vote by absent elector’s ballot.
(2) In the case of requests for primary ballots:
(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection, an elector who has designated a political party affiliation shall receive a primary ballot for that political party.
(b) An elector who has designated a political party affiliation pursuant to section 34-404, Idaho Code, may receive the primary election ballot of a political party other than the political party such elector is affiliated with if such other political party has provided notification to the secretary of state that identifies the political party such elector is affiliated with, as provided for in section 34-904A(2)(b), Idaho Code.
(c) An "unaffiliated" elector shall receive the primary ballot for the political party which the elector designated in the elector’s application for an absentee ballot pursuant to section 34-1002, Idaho Code. Provided however, that a political party’s ballot shall not be provided to an "unaffiliated" elector where that political party has not elected to allow "unaffiliated" electors to vote in such party’s primary election pursuant to section 34-904A, Idaho Code.
(d) If an "unaffiliated" elector does not indicate a choice of political party’s primary ballot, the elector shall receive a nonpartisan ballot.
(3) The absentee ballot may be delivered to the absent elector in the office of the county clerk, by postage prepaid mail or by other appropriate means, including use of a facsimile machine or other electronic transmission. Validly requested absentee ballots for candidates for federal office, where the request is received at least forty-five (45) days before an election, shall be sent no later than forty-five (45) days before that election to all electors who are entitled to vote by absentee ballot.
(4) Pursuant to the uniformed and overseas citizens absentee voting act (UOCAVA, 52 U.S.C. 20301 et seq., as amended) the secretary of state shall establish procedures for the transmission of blank absentee ballots by mail and by electronic transmission for all electors who are entitled to vote by absentee ballot under the uniformed and overseas citizens absentee voting act, and by which such electors may designate whether the elector prefers the transmission of such ballots by mail or electronically. If no preference is stated, the ballots shall be transmitted by mail. The secretary of state shall establish procedures for transmitting such ballots in a manner that shall protect the security and integrity of such ballots and the privacy of the elector throughout the process of transmission.
(5) A political party may supply a witness to accompany the clerk in the personal delivery of an absentee ballot. If the political party desires to supply a witness, it shall be the duty of the political party to supply the names of such witnesses to the clerk no later than forty-six (46) days prior to the election. The clerk shall notify such witnesses of the date and approximate hour the clerk or deputy clerk intends to deliver the ballot.
(6) A candidate for public office or a spouse of a candidate for public office shall not be a witness in the personal delivery of absentee ballots.
(7) An elector physically unable to mark such elector’s own ballot may receive assistance in marking such ballot from the officer delivering same or an available person of the elector’s own choosing. In the event the election officer is requested to render assistance in marking an absent elector’s ballot, the officer shall ascertain the desires of the elector and shall vote the applicant’s ballot accordingly. When such ballot is marked by an election officer, the witnesses on hand shall be allowed to observe such marking. No county clerk, deputy, or other person assisting a disabled voter shall attempt to influence the vote of such elector in any manner.
(8) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, for any election that takes place prior to December 31, 2020, the following provisions shall apply:
(a) Validly requested absentee ballots by uniformed and overseas voters, pursuant to the uniformed and overseas citizens absentee voting act, where the request is received at least forty-five (45) days before an election, shall be sent no later than forty-five (45) days before that election; and
(b) For any other validly requested absentee ballots that are received at least thirty (30) days before an election by electors who are entitled to vote by absentee ballot and are not within the provisions of paragraph (a) of this subsection, such ballots shall be sent no later than thirty (30) days before the election.
[34-1003, added 1970, ch. 140, sec. 164, p. 351; am. 1973, ch. 304, sec. 9, p. 646; am. 1975, ch. 66, sec. 1, p. 132; am. 1984, ch. 131, sec. 6, p. 307; am. 1993, ch. 100, sec. 1, p. 253; am. 1994, ch. 122, sec. 4, p. 273; am. 1996, ch. 74, sec. 1, p. 238; am. 2010, ch. 332, sec. 2, p. 882; am. 2011, ch. 11, sec. 14, p. 31; am. 2011, ch. 319, sec. 10, p. 935; am. 2019, ch. 96, sec. 11, p. 349; am. 2020, 1st E.S., ch. 1, sec. 1, p. 5.]