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Common Questions About Voting

Answered: 5 Common Questions Voters Have

With just 41 days before the general elections, many voters-to-be are quickly nearing the voter registration deadline in their respective states.

In 2008, there was a total of more than 130 million people who voted in the presidential election, the highest turnout in US history. Let's make this year's turnout even higher, by taking steps toward registering to vote and encouraging friends and family to do the same. Many people hesitate to register because of lingering unanswered questions, so we've addressed some of the common concerns people have below:

Does it carry over if I registered for the last election?

If you already registered, then you don't have to register again unless you have since moved, changed your name, or changed your choice of political party.


I didn't vote in the primaries. Can I still vote during the general elections?

Even if you didn't vote in the primaries, you will still be able to vote in the presidential elections come November.

How do I register to vote?

There are many ways to register to vote. The most common method is to mail in registration forms. Find out what the general requirements are and the different ways to register to vote here.

Read on for more.

When do I have to register to vote?

The deadline differs from state to state, but it should be coming up soon for most. California voter registration for the upcoming presidential election must be postmarked no later than Oct. 22, 2012, while in New York, mailed applications must be postmarked no later than Oct. 12, 2012. This site has the whole list of voting registration deadlines.

Can I vote early?

In 34 states and the District of Columbia, you can vote early without giving a reason. In fact, voting early is encouraged so there is less chance that mishaps or scheduling conflicts will prevent you from making it to the voting center. This will also free up your time for volunteering on Election Day. Some states don't allow early voting, but they will offer the option of absentee voting for people who can't or are unwilling to make it to the voting centers. Some reasons that can qualify you for absentee voting in certain states include working a 10-hour shift during polling hours and being absent from the county on voting day. Find out if you qualify for absentee voting in your state or if your state provides the early voting option by visiting

What other questions about voting would you like answered?

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Grace-Hitchcock Grace-Hitchcock 4 years
Thanks for the answers - always smart to be well informed! 
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