Be A Voter

Questions about voting

Vote early. Vote often.

If you don't vote, don't complain. It's that simple. Make voting a habit. Voting is not just to elect a president every four years. It's about local, state, and school board elections too. Local elections affect more of your daily life than other elections. Find the dates of upcoming elections in your state.  Register, submit a change of address, and find your polling place here.


Below are responses to some of the questions that arise each election season. 

Watch this if you don't believe your vote really does matter.

Frequently-Asked Questions About Voting

Where can I find my polling place?

You can find your polling place, register to vote, and submit address changes at Vote411.


Why bother to vote?

If you don't, those who do vote may elect people who won't help you meet your goals. Why wouldn't you spend a few minutes voting when the outcome will affect your life now and in the future? You have a lot of power. Use it by being a voter.


Does my vote really count?

Yes, it does. One vote can determine the outcome of an election. There have been more and more election recounts and close calls across the country. Read here and here about how your vote can swing an election. Then watch Incredibly Close Elections video below.


Why should I vote if I’m not interested in politics?

Politics affects almost every aspect of our lives, whether we are aware of it or not. Seemingly unrelated issues may have direct consequences for your daily life. Do you rely on the Internet? Then vote. Do you have adequate health insurance? Vote. Do you get student financial aid for college? Vote. Do you worry about your children’s safety? Vote. See how these examples relate to voting.


What if I don’t like any of the candidates? Should I still vote?

Yes, you still need to vote. All candidates have flaws. Your job as a voter is not to “like” them. Your job as a voter is to elect the one whose campaign statements, voting history, and proposed policies are compatible with your goals and will contribute to the common good. Make a list of each candidate's statements and tally them up to see how much you overlap. Vote for the one who comes closest to your goals. Hold your nose if you must...but VOTE.


How can I vote if I don’t have the time?

You can take a shortcut and use My E-Z Voter Checklist. The checklist walks you through the steps and makes it easy for you to prepare before the next election. Review it now, register or update your registration, identify your priorities, and find your polling place. Do as much as you can online, depending what your state offers. The more you vote, the easier it gets, and the more influence you have over the outcome. 


How can I get reliable background information on candidates and their positions?

Actively seek reliable sources of information. Look for credible, evidence-based research from non-partisan, non-profit sources. Look for websites with .edu and .org endings; they are non-profit. Sites that end with .com are for-profit businesses and may try to sell you something. 


I attend college out of state. Can I still vote? How?

Yes, you can still vote. You can vote by absentee ballot in the state where you live (your permanent residence) by requesting an absentee ballot. If you choose not to do that, you can use your school address to register in the state where you go to college. You CANNOT, however, vote in both places. Contact your state's elections office for details. 


I'll be away during election time. Can I still vote?

Yes you can, by requesting an absentee ballot in advance from your elections office


What kind of identification do I need to bring with me to the polls?

It varies from state to state. Follow the link to your state's rules for voter identification requirements.


What if I have a problem while I'm at the polls and not allowed to vote?

Call the Election Protection Hotline immediately at 1-866-687-8683.  Report any problems you may encounter with voter registration, voter identification, or voter intimidation.


Watch this to find how how important showing up to vote is.