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Voter Information

Where to Vote

Be Ready! Each state has specific voter registration deadlines, absentee voting requirements, electronic voting machines and voter's bill of rights. Find your state's information and prepare yourself before casting your ballot.

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To be eligible to register you must…

  • Be a U.S. Citizen

  • Be 18 years old on or before the date of the general, primary or other election in which you want to vote

  • Not be serving a jail sentence or be on parole for a felony conviction (Ex-felons can usually register to vote if they completed their term of probation or parole)

  • Each state may have additional voter eligibility requirements. Learn about your state's specific requirements.

What is absentee voting?

If you cannot get to your poll site on Election Day, you may qualify to vote by absentee ballot. You can vote by absentee ballot if you are temporarily or permanently ill/disabled, a member of the armed forces, or if you are out of town on Election Day, depending on your state’s absentee ballot qualifications. Requirements vary per state, but generally you have to request an application by mail a number of days before Election Day.

Voter’s Bill of Rights

Some states have enumerated specific rights that voters in their state are entitled to. Know your rights as a voter!

What is the difference between a closed and open primary?

Closed Primary
Voter may only vote for candidate belonging to your registered party.

Open Primary
Voter may vote for candidate belonging to any party.

Semi-Closed Primary
Voters not affiliated with a party may vote in any party’s primary election.

Preferential Primary
Voter may rank the candidates in order of preference.

Top Two Primary
Voters may vote for candidate belonging to any party, and the two candidates who receive the most votes qualify for the General Election.

 

Ballot Equipment

After the controversies of the 2000 U.S. presidential election, the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) was signed into law in 2002. The purpose of HAVA is to replace lever-based and punch-card voting systems; establish election administration standards and create the Election Assistance Commission for assistance in administering Federal elections. Since HAVA, many states have upgraded their voting machines.

Learn more about your state's ballot equipement here.