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Those voting by mail urged to post early

Sept. 29, 2012 at 10:51 PM

WASHINGTON, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. Postal Service officials say more than 25 million ballots are expected to be mailed this fall so they are encouraging voters to mail their ballots early.

"To ensure the timely delivery of mailed ballots, voters in the contiguous United States are asked to mail completed absentee ballots at least three days before the Nov. 6 date of the federal election -- or Nov. 3," the U.S. Postal Service said in a statement.

"Ballots mailed from the contiguous states to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands and vice versa must be mailed at least five days prior to the election date -- or Nov. 1. Voters should also consider the time of day when dropping their vote in a collection box to be sure it's not past the pick-up time for the particular collection box."

Americans overseas, including those in the U.S. Armed Services, should plan on mailing ballots according to the mailing schedule at www.usps.com/gov-services/gov-services.htm, or by contacting a local Army Post Office/Fleet Post Office -- APO/FPO -- or American embassy, for guidance.

"Mail is an increasingly important part of U.S. elections, and we are confident in our ability to provide timely delivery of election mail," Megan Brennan, chief operating officer, said. "All American voters living overseas, whether civilian or military, have the opportunity to mail their completed ballots back home free of charge using the APO/FPO or by hand-delivering their ballots to the nearest American embassy or consulate."

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