The state Assembly has approved a bill allowing elections officials to count ballots that are received up to three days after an election, even though it does not require a postmark.

SB29 passed Monday on a 49-20 vote over the objections of Republican lawmakers who said it could promote voter fraud.

The legislation by Democratic Sen. Lou Correa of Anaheim does not require that late ballots bear postmarks. A voter signature dated before Election Day would suffice.

Republican lawmakers said the proposed standard for accepting ballots is too low to prevent late voting in close races.

Supporters say the legislation would ensure that all voices are heard at the ballot box.

Correa's office says 26,000 vote-by-mail ballots arrived too late to be counted in the November 2010 election.

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