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Judge blocks Iowa directive on absentee ballot applications

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- A judge blocked Iowa's secretary of state Monday from enforcing an order that barred counties from sending absentee ballot applications to voters with their identification information already filled in.

Judge Robert Hanson ruled in favor of state and national Democratic Party groups, who contended that Secretary of State Paul Pate exceeded his authority when he told counties that absentee ballot request forms must be blank when mailed to voters.

Hanson ordered Pate to put enforcement of his directive on hold.

Local elections officials said they were studying the ruling to determine the impact, including whether they could take steps to mail ballots to thousands of voters whose requests were previously invalidated based on Pate's directive.

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Associated Press

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