Registration, Early Voting, and more! All of your voting questions, answered.
Election Day is Nov. 6 this year, and we want to make sure you know everything you need to know regarding elections this year. The voting process can sometimes be confusing, so we have compiled information below on how to register to vote as well as the different ways you can vote. Included below is specific information for those who might have mobility issues, or those you simply wish to vote remotely and avoid the polls on Election Day.
How to Register to Vote
If you plan to vote at a polling location on Election Day then you must register. There are numerous ways to register to vote, including on Election Day. By registering before Election Day you will not have to worry about bringing documents proving residence to the polling place, and it can speed up your voting experience that day. If you’re unsure if you have already registered, you can check your registration status here.
For an easy option, just go online and register to vote. To register online you will need to provide an email address, and a Minnesota driver’s license/Minnesota Identification card/last four digits of social security number.
Another easy option for voter registration is by mail. Simply download and print the application, then either mail it in or drop if off at your county election office or here:
Secretary of State
60 Empire Dr.
Saint Paul, MN 55103
The paper application is offered in numerous languages, as well as a large print option.
If you are unable to register to vote prior to Election Day, don’t worry! You can register to vote at your polling location on Election Day. To register on Election Day, you must bring a proof of residence. A list of approved documents/ways to prove residence can be found here.
The last day to register by mail or online is Oct. 16.
Ways to Vote
If you choose to vote in person on Election Day, the first step is finding where your polling location is. Here is where you can find information on where to vote. Most polling locations are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. As long as you are in line by 8 p.m., you will be able to vote.
If you would like or require any assistance during voting there are many options. You can bring a family member, friend, or neighbor, to assist you with any or all parts of the voting process. A ballot marking machine is also available to help make the voting process easy for you. This machine can mark a ballot for you, display a ballot in large print, and read a ballot to you through headphones. The machine works by filling out your ballot using a Braille keypad, touchscreen or sip-and-puff device. More information on voter assistance can be found on this page. If you need help getting to the polls on Election Day, here you can find services that provide people with transportation assistance. Companies such as Uber and Lyft are also providing free and reduced price rides to the polls on election day.
Information on your rights are located on this voter rights page.
Whether going to the polls on Election Day isn’t an option for you or you just want to avoid the chaos and lines on Election Day, absentee (or early) voting could be the right option for you! If you choose to cast your vote through an absentee ballot this year it is recommended that you apply for absentee voting before Friday, Oct. 5. You can absentee vote by mail or in person between Sept. 21 and Nov. 5.
Vote in this year’s election from the comfort of your home! To place your absentee vote by mail all you have to do is apply to have the absentee ballot sent to you, fill out the instructions once you receive your ballot, then mail it back. You can either apply for your absentee ballot online or fill out the paper application and return it to your county election office by mail, fax, or email. You do not have to be registered to vote to apply for you absentee ballot! Head here for more information on absentee voting through the mail and to find the application for absentee voting. Once you’ve mailed in your absentee ballot you can track the status of your ballot.
Absentee voting in person allows you to vote early at a designated location and avoid the busy lines on Election Day. Vote at your county election office or other designated locations for in-person absentee voting. You don’t have to be registered, so if you aren’t already register be sure to bring one proof of residence.
Information on voting if you are in the military or abroad is located on this page.
What’s on the ballot this year?
You can view your specific sample ballot here.
Every Minnesotan will have the following on their ballot:
- U.S. Senator
- U.S. Senator (special election)
- U.S. Representative
- Governor & Lt. Governor
- Secretary of State
- State Auditor
- Attorney General
- State Representative
- Judicial offices
Some people will have the following on their ballot:
- County Officers
- City Officers
- School Board Members
- Township Officers
- Hospital Board Members
- Park Board District Members
- Local ballot questions
All information on this post is also located on the Secretary of State website.