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"Sharpie does not invalidate the ballot"

Social Media Rumor Claims Sharpies Invalidate Ballots


Last updated 11/10/2020 at 3:04pm

With tensions growing in the 2020 election, a rumor sparked concerns that Sharpie markers made ballots read "invalid." However, the San Diego County Registrar of Voter's Office released a statement saying that rumor was not true.

Social media went hectic on this rumor, and was dubbed as "#SharpieGate."

On Nov. 5, the San Diego County Registrar of Voters put out a statement in regards to the circulating rumor:

"In San Diego County, we do not provide Sharpies to voters to mark their ballot. What we use are archival pens, which we researched over 10 years ago as the best marking instrument for a voter. The ink in the archival pen actually helps in preventing bleed through of the ballot while ensuring the "bubble" is clearly marked.

Regardless, using a Sharpie does not invalidate the ballot. Our voting system prevents a situation where if a vote uses a Sharpie to vote and it bleeds through to the other side, it will not impact any "bubbles" on the opposite side."