It’s been a long week and today, I’ve got one job for you. US elections are next week, and if you haven’t voted yet…
Do it and do it asap.
For those of you who may need it, I’ve collected a bit of information on options and the different ways to get your votes in. Not all options are created equal, especially at this point in the voting process, so stick around if you’re looking for some important info to know before you take action. This will be quick— you’ve got things to do after all.
Absentee mail-in ballots:
At this point, it’s suggested that people attempting to mail-in absentee ballots find an alternate way to vote. Why? In a handful of states, your ballot needs to be received by election day in order to be counted. With the election less than a week away and the postal service slower due to a large influx of mail from many states, mailing ballots in now may run the risk of your ballot not making it in time to be counted depending on where you’re voting from. Historically, this has impacted election results, as is documented in NPR’s article here, and on a personal level you vote because you want it to count, right?
So, make sure it does.
Every state is different so check this page to know what your state laws or requirements are and find out more information here on the government website. When it comes down to it, many officials suggest choosing other options for casting ballots such as the following:
- Turn in ballots to local election clerks or official drop boxes
- Take blank ballots and submit them at the polls, cast a traditional in-person vote instead
- If you cannot vote by any other means, return your ballot by mail asap.
Know your options, what applies to you, and how to go about each of these options by following the links above.
This voting method is more straightforward. If you’ve got a ballot to turn in and want to place it in a drop box, go for it! But make sure it’s a valid/secure drop box. There have been issues with invalid or fake drop boxes popping up throughout the country, so it’s good to check where your valid local drop boxes are in order to make sure your vote will get to where it needs to go and be counted.
Once you verify where your closest validated drop box is and you’re headed out, mask up and get ready to vote! Don’t forget to sign your ballot, address it, and date it properly too.
Voting in person:
Voting in person is still going on. If this is what you want to do, have a plan for your vote and mask up before heading to the polls. It’s important to know what you want to do and where your votes are going to land before you get there, otherwise, you will spend much more time than you probably want to at the polling place. In some cases, people end up leaving some props or official/senator votes blank due to a lack of understanding—save yourself the time by researching what you need to know and what you want to do before you go. Once you’ve done this, find your local polling places, know your rights once you get there, and have an ID on you. Then, get ready to vote and happy participating.
Voting on election day:
Just like in person voting, you can vote on election day. The only difference is that you need to know just what polling places are open– as this may be different for the day of the election– and what positions are open. This year’s federal election will be Tuesday, November 3, 2020. Positions on the ballot will include the president and vice-president, 1/3 of the Senate, and all of the House of Representatives. For many areas, state and local elections will also be on the ballot, so know who you’re voting for before you go in.
Follow this link to find out where polling locations may be open near you and get your vote on.
Overall, these are not all the details when it comes to voting but if you haven’t got your vote in yet, I hope you’re willing to figure out how and where you need to get your own vote in. Less than a week away, time is running out.
If you have voted already, good on ya—I appreciate you making it through this entire post after already voting.
Wherever you’re at in the US or beyond, I hope everyone has a good weekend and enjoys the weather as it cools down these days. Don’t forget that the clocks go backward an hour this weekend, so we get an extra hour of sleep… if that’s how you plan to spend it. I know I’ll probably be up, after all, I’ve got a lot on my plate lately, but it seems like a lot of us do these days. So take care of yourselves and I’ll see you next week!
Happy Friday everyone.