Oct 30

Tips on Smooth Voting

ballot box
Okay, so you’ve done all the requisite research and you’ve made up your mind; you’ve decided which public official will receive your support in the upcoming election on November 2. The time has nearly come to pay a visit to your local ballot box. But before the polls officially open, take a minute to read these top tips on voting, compiled by The Arc UCP Public Policy Collaboration to save time (=money) and make your voting experience as stress-free as possible:

1. Not all states are the same – Election laws and regulations can vary significantly from State to State. Check out the National Association of Secretaries of State, where the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the Election Reform Information Project have compiled a list of links with voting information, including regulations specific to each region.

2. Voting early or absentee - A number of states allow absentee voting by anyone who requests to do so (i.e. you don’t have to be away or unable to go to the polls), and still others allow early voting. Find out what will make it easiest for you to cast your vote, and do it.

3. E-voting – Casting your ballot online is a new and easy option. But some experts fear that the questionable security and reliability of new voting technology may result in another voting fiasco.

4. At the ballot box – If you decide that the best way to cast your vote is at your ballot box, get to the polls early to avoid long lines and hassles, and don’t forget your I.D.!

5. Problems with polling – If you have any problems at the polling place, call the Election Protection Hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683). It’s a nationwide program run by civil rights and voting rights groups, including the participation of experts and attorneys, who are there to safeguard your right to cast a ballot on Election Day.