What you need to know to vote this November
By Bri Landry
Texas is fifth worst in voter turnout. In 2016 only 55.4% of Texas voted in the Presidential Election. Midterm elections are known for being worse bringing out as little as 35% of the voters to the polls.
There are lots of reasons why. People think that their vote won’t count, they moved and forgot to register, or people just don’t know where to start. So here is the information you need to know for this November Midterm elections.
Am I registered in Texas?
First, find out if you are registered and where. You can do that here.
If the address that pops up isn’t where you currently live in Texas you need to change it. If you moved somewhere in the same county you CAN update that online. However, If you are no longer living in the same county you need to mail in a new registration form.
I’m I eligible to vote?
Are you a citizen of the United States?
Are you a resident of the county where you submit the application?
Are you at least 17 years and 10 months old and will be 18 or older on Election Day?
Are you not a convicted felon (though you may be eligible to vote if you have completed your sentence, probation, and parole)?
Have you not been declared by a court exercising probate jurisdiction to be either totally mentally incapacitated or partially mentally incapacitated without the right to vote?
How do I register to vote?
In Texas, you can NOT register online. You have to print out an application and mail it in or drop it off.
You can also pick up a voter registration form places like H.E.B your local library, or even Amy’s Ice Cream. If you would prefer to have a form mailed to you, text “register” to the number 48683.
If you are not sure where to mail the form look up your county’s location.
What if I am not going to be home during the election?
You can apply for an absentee ballot. These are the qualifications for an absentee.
Are you 65 years or older?
Are you disabled?
Will you be out of the county on Election Day and during the period for early voting by personal appearance?
Are you confined in jail, but otherwise eligible?
For an absentee ballot fill this out and mail it in.
To summarize here is a checklist.
Find out if you are registered.
Find out if you are eligible to vote.
Print out registration or absentee form.
Find out where to mail it in.
Mail the form before October, 9th 2018
If you don’t get the ballot in on time you will not be able to vote this November, but you will still be officially registered at that address for the next election.
Last date to register for the midterm elections October, 9th
Early voting starts October 22nd
Early voting ends November 2nd
Election day November 6th
Elections are always on a Tuesday so be sure to make some time for voting and take some friends. Together we can turn Texas into a voting state.