(NewsBreakDaily.com) – Everyone knows how important it is to vote and if they don’t, they should. But what do you need to know to make sure you are able to vote on election day? Like anything else, it takes planning.
How to Register
The very first thing you need to do before you hit the polls is register. In most states, you can register online, if that’s not available in your state, you can register by mail with the National Mail Voter Registration Form.
You can also register in person at a state or local election office, DMV or BMV, armed forces recruitment centers, or county and state public assistance offices.
While the legal voting age in the US is 18, each state has its own rules for when you can register or pre-register. In some cases, you don’t have to be 18 yet, just by a certain date. If you’re unsure, check online to determine your eligibility.
Know What You’re Voting For
Once you’re registered to vote, make sure you know who you’re voting for. During an election, you’ll see a myriad of candidates running for positions at local, state, and federal levels, not just presidential options.
Research ahead of time to learn what will be on the ballot, both candidates and issues. Many times, you’re voting on specific local and state bills, too. Being informed ahead of time means no skipping questions or voting blindly.
Also ensure you know how your candidate’s name will appear on the ballot. Sometimes their full legal name can be different from what you are used to seeing. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) is one perfect example of this.
The ballot will be broken up according to the different issues and positions up for grabs. Some states still use paper forms while others provide computers for electronic votes.
Getting to the Polls
Knowing who the candidates are and what issues are at hand is only useful if you can get to the polling place. Every registered voter is assigned a specific voting location based on their address. If you’re unsure, contact your local election office or search online.
If you don’t drive, you’ll need to look at other options such as public transportation or ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft. Remember to bring your ID with you, otherwise, you’ll be turned away or asked to return.
Unfortunately, for upcoming elections, you may need to think about making sure you are safe from contagions such as the novel coronavirus. When facing any kind of viral outbreak, it’s important to follow the guidelines set forth by the CDC and our government officials.
Remember to practice social distancing, meaning you should remain at least six feet away from other people. Wash your hands frequently and use a hand sanitizer when soap and water aren’t available.
The right to vote is something we tend to take for granted. But it’s a right that we need to exercise. Remember that who ends up in office is up to you and if you don’t vote, you may not be happy with the results.
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