New Jersey’s decision to let citizens displaced by Hurricane Sandy vote by email and fax appears to have backfired, with the state now extending the deadline to return those ballots to 8 p.m. Eastern on Friday.

Some Voters in Jersey did not receive their email and fax ballots today after repeatedly requesting them. Those who attempted received bounce-backs from overloaded inboxes and many of those who called to complain got busy signals. Others voters were so desperate that they illegally asked to turn in ballots and election data to a personal Hotmail account.

“People are telling us that they’re not able to get through,” Kerry Margaret Butch, executive director of the League of Women Voters, told “Their emails are getting bounced back.”

Hurricane Sandy caused devastating damage all along the east coast of U.S., with New Jersey seeing some of the worst damage. So Gov. Chris Christie (pictured) decided to allow email and fax voting for those displaced by the storm. Christie indicated that the number of people needing vote in this manner should be small relative to N.J.’s population, but the numbers now appear to be larger than anticipated.

Unfortunately, this means New Jersey will not be counted tonight on the Electoral College (although it is a solid blue state) and ballots cast after Election Day could face challenges.

“We simply want to ensure that New Jerseyans displaced by the storm and first responders are not disenfranchised and have access to a ballot,” Ernest Landante, spokesperson to Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, told

N.J. Governor Chris Christie photo via Bob Jagendorf/Flickr