Your Voting Checklist for the 2020 Election
Election Day 2020 is Tuesday, November 3rd
Your vote counts. We promise. Your individual vote contributes to the popular vote and your state’s electoral vote in different ways, so it’s imperative that you do your part! Run through our checklist to ensure casting your ballot is easier than ever before.
Know Important Dates
Look up the registration, early voting, and mail-in voting deadlines in your state so you don’t miss out on having your voice heard!
Check Your Voter Registration Status
Are you registered to vote? Is your voter registration correct and complete? States set their own deadlines and requirements for voter registration, and these can change between election years. Even if you voted previously and have not moved, make sure you are registered to vote at your current address at Vote.org. (And share this link with friends and family to make sure they are also registered to vote.)
Register to Vote
If you are a new voter or a returning voter that is no longer registered to vote, do that NOW! Some states allow you to register the same day you vote, but many do not and have deadlines for registering that are several weeks before voting day.
Make a Voting Plan
What’s your plan to vote? By mail or in-person? (If by mail, follow your state’s tracking to make sure your vote gets counted.)
Request Your Absentee / Mail-In Ballot (if applicable)
For the 2020 elections, some states are proactively sending every eligible voter an absentee ballot application, but many are not. Learn the rules in your state and request a mail-in ballot if needed.
Return Your Mail-In Ballot (if applicable)
After you receive your ballot via mail, send it back as soon as possible to make sure your vote is counted on November 3rd. Add a stamp (even if it’s not required) to ensure your ballot arrives. See your state’s receipt and postmark deadlines here.
Find Your Polling Location
Your typical polling place(s) may have changed due to COVID, so plan ahead! Check with your county elections office to learn which locations are open for early voting and which will be open on election day. Note: the same locations may not be open for both early and election-day voting.
Check Your State’s Voter ID Requirements
If you plan to vote in-person, make sure you have and take with you the necessary identification to be able to vote. Each state has its own laws in this regard – find your state’s ID requirements here.
Educate Yourself Before You Vote
In addition to the presidential election, other government officials will be on the November ballot. Do you know which of your local and state officials will be on the ballot and what they stand for, in order to make an informed decision? Are you up-to-date on the propositions you will be voting on at the polls? Spend some time reading up on candidates, the issues at hand, and proposed law changes or additions. Your local paper or the League of Women Voters may put out a slate of local propositions and their impact on your community.
Get Out the Vote
Check with family, friends, co-workers, neighbors – everyone matters! Offer to help folks check their registration status and to register to vote, if needed. Offer rides to get people to the polls. Who are 3 people you can talk to to double check they are registered and help them make a voting plan?
Get even more involved by volunteering at the polls or with an organization that does outreach via phone calls or text. Or sign up to help with postcard outreach to new and returning voters to encourage their participation.
Plan your outfit! (yes, seriously)
Most states ban campaigning (a.k.a. electioneering) within a certain radius of a polling place and, depending on where you live, that can include simply wearing political garb, such as buttons, t-shirts, and hats with your favorite candidate’s name, or political party of choice. You don’t want to wait in line to vote, only to be sent home because of your hat or t-shirt.
Whatever the best method is for you, make it happen! If you choose to vote in person, stay safe – wear a mask, take hand sanitizer (and use it often) and be sure to follow social distancing mandates.
Election day problems?
Report an election problem by calling:
1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (en Español)