Correos has updated the numbers of votes processed for mailing. They have been, until 12 at night this Thursday, 2,461,284. With this, only 161,254 voters who made the request and had not yet sent their vote remained for the last day. The deadline for submission ended this Friday at 2:00 p.m.
With the current data, the votes cast represent 93.8% of the applications admitted, the highest ratio reached in general elections since 2008, the first year with approved statistical records, as confirmed by the public company in a statement. Pending the final data, this number of postal votes already represents the highest number of postal votes recorded in the history of Spanish democracy. According to the company, “it demonstrates the success in the management of voting by mail.”
Specifically, it represents 98% more than the total number of votes admitted in the General Elections held on April 28, 2019 (1,241,716) and 81% more than those registered in the homologous process held on June 26, 2016 (1,357,745) which, until now, set the historical record in the number of votes by mail managed in the electoral processes of Spanish democracy.
Correos recalls that 2,622,808 applications for voting by mail have been admitted, also a new historical record. Correos has made 100% of the electoral documentation available to applicants, either by hand delivery at home or by notifying them to be picked up at Correos offices. The number of electoral documents that were still available to citizens today, when the offices opened, was 123,822, a figure that decreases with the passing of the hours.
With the current data, the difference between requests and votes admitted currently stands at 6.1%, below the usual ratio in all electoral processes (7.8% in April 2019; 6.6% in June 2016, and an average of 7.3% considering all the general elections held since 2008).
The Post Office Conspiracy
A few days ago, Alberto Núñez Feijóo once again raised doubts about the cleanliness of the electoral process in Spain using postal voting. He already did it in 2009 in Galicia and throughout 2022 before the regional and municipal elections on May 28. This time Feijóo gave rise to conspiracy theories about the Post Office, which he knows very well because he was its president. “I ask the postmen to work morning, noon and night, and even if they don’t have enough reinforcements, they know they are guarding something sacred,” said Feijóo, who led the company from 2000 to 2003.
“I ask you, regardless of your bosses, to distribute all the votes,” he said, implying that the directors of the public company are promoting some kind of boycott of the vote-by-mail options.
Reinforcement of personnel: 21,000 new contracts
Correos, which this Friday has published a message of thanks to its staff in different media, assures that “it has provided all the organisational, technological, logistical and human resources necessary to guarantee compliance with the public service obligations entrusted to it in the electoral processes”.
Specifically, Correos has estimated more than 21,000 reinforcement contracts, both for offices and for the delivery of shipments and the necessary tasks in logistics centers. In addition, Correos has applied other measures such as the extraordinary opening of offices on Saturdays and Sundays, the extension of customer service hours until 10:00 p.m. in 654 offices throughout the country, opening on local holidays, and the extension of hours throughout the network, particularly in tourist areas where there has been a greater influx. “All this to streamline and facilitate the management of voting by mail as much as possible,” he assured.
For the electoral day of July 23, Correos is entrusted with the mission of delivering the votes sent by mail at the polling stations. To this end, Correos will establish a special logistics deployment, made up of more than 14,000 professionals, including delivery personnel, offices and treatment centers, and will mobilize all the vehicles in its fleet that are necessary for the proper development of its mission. When the polling stations open, a first team of staff from the public postal company will deliver the votes in custody at the 60,314 polling stations distributed in the 22,562 polling stations of the 8,131 municipalities in Spain.
Another group of employees will deliver to the polling stations those votes by mail that could be received during the course of the day. Finally, another team will collect the so-called “third envelope”, with the final result of the scrutiny, from the polling stations of each and every one of the country’s polling stations.