This is a guest post written by Emily Garland, League of Women Voters of New Jersey intern.
The following is the first of a series of blog posts titled “Why Do I Vote?” In the series, different League members, myself included, explain why they vote. It is our hope that through reading the blog posts of the civically engaged, others will want to follow suit.
One of the League of Women Voters of New Jersey‘s goals is to expand voter participation. To expand participation, we try to make it as easy and accessible as possible. If this series has inspired even one person to register to vote, we can say it was successful. But in all honesty, we definitely want more than just one person to be inspired to get to the polls on November 6th. So, if you want to vote but don’t know where to start, here are some links that can help get you started!
Here is a page that has all the information you could need about voting in New Jersey. Questions answered include, Who can register? How do I register? Where do I register? How do I vote by mail? When should I re-register?
To register to vote click on your county, print out the form, complete the form and mail it in.
October 16th is the last day to register to vote.
In New Jersey, you do not need a reason to apply for a vote by mail ballot! If you are going to be too far from your polling location on Election Day, or simply do not feel like leaving your house, here is a link for vote by mail applications, formally known as absentee ballots. You simply click on your county, print out the form, fill it out, and mail it in.
To receive a ballot by mail, the application must be received by your county clerk by October 30th (seven day prior to the election).
A voter may also apply in person for a vote by mail ballot to the county clerk until 3:00 pm the day before the election – November 5th. You can find your County Clerk and Commissioner of Registration on this page.
All vote by mail ballots must be returned to the Board of Elections by 8 pm on Election Day, November 6th.
If you think you are registered, but aren’t sure you can find out here.
Now that you are registered, and planning to vote the next step is to find out your polling location.
All NJ polls are open at 6 am and close at 8 pm. If you are in line at the polling location at 8 pm, you still have the right to vote.
The American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey and the League of Women Voters of New Jersey has created a voting rights card that lists all your voting rights.
Of course, if you still have questions you can call the League of Women Voters of New Jersey’s Voter Assistance Hotline at 1-800-792-VOTE (8683)
Stay tuned for another post tomorrow…