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In New Jersey, dead people are getting vote-by-mail notices | nj1015.com

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Jean Chesney died in April 2014. She was laid to rest at the Hollywood Cemetery in Union Township.

But two weeks ago her family in Irvington got a letter from the Essex County Clerk's Office saying that she would be receiving a vote-by-mail ballot.

She wasn't the only one.

Former Gov. Brendan Byrne once joked that he would have liked to be buried in Hudson County so that he could remain active in politics. But some people in New Jersey worry that the "dead" could be voting across the state.

"Somebody could take this and vote with it. And you don’t know how many more are going out," Morris said this week. "It's kind of scary."

As the November midterm election approaches, with Democrats trying to wrest control of Congress, county clerks and election boards in New Jersey have been scrambling to update their voter rolls.

It's a job that was made harder last month when Gov. Phil Murphy signed a law requiring that all voters who voted by mail in the 2016 presidential election be automatically provided a mail-in ballot this year unless they opt out. The law was part of a push by Democrats to expand voting, including by automatically registering people to vote at Motor Vehicle Commission, welfare and parole offices.

Election officials rushed to get out letters notifying these voters that they were on the list to receive mail-in ballots, and warning them that if they did not opt out they would not be able to vote on a machine if they show up in person at the polls on Election Day.

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