As summer slips into fall, many of us have our eyes on Election Day, November 3rd. It’s a time to vote for candidates who reflect our values. The constant news feed might give us the impression only national candidates are on the ballot. Of course that is only a small set of choices we have to make. Knowing how to vote and getting familiar with our ballot are key to making our votes count.
First things first, register to vote. If you are a U.S. citizen and at least 18 years of age on Election Day, a resident of Minnesota for 20 days or more, and have completed all aspects of a felony sentence (if that applies to you), then you are eligible to vote. You can register to vote online at the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website, in-person, or by requesting a paper registration form from your local county auditor or treasurer’s office. Minnesota also allows for same-day registration at your polling place, but you must have a valid photo ID and a document showing proof of residence, like a utility bill.
Given the pandemic situation, you may have already received voter registration or an absentee ballot request form by mail. In my voting area, our township has closed its polling location and we will use mail-in voting only. You can check the status of your polling place using the Polling Place Finder at the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website or by contacting your local county auditor or treasurer’s office.
The state primary will be held on August 11th, 2020, which helps us select the candidates for each party who will face off in the general election on November 3rd, 2020. Be sure to visit the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website (mnvotes.org) or your local county auditor or treasurer’s office to learn more about your voting options. You can also sign up to be an election judge if you want to get more involved in this important democratic process.
Remember, your vote matters.
Nate Dorr, Vice President for Advocacy
Northwest Minnesota Foundation