The next chance to vote in Illinois is on Tuesday, November 3rd, 2020. During this election, Illinois citizens will vote for a new president, choose our senators, and answer important questions all through their powerful ballots.
There are several steps to preparing for an election, like we outlined in our primary voting blog back in February featuring information about primaries, registering to vote, and how to vote. While our primary voting guide has important information, a few things have changed since then!
Steps To Vote In Illinois
First, make sure you are registered to vote. You can check your registration at this link. If you have moved or changed your name recently, you will need to re-register. You can register to vote online until October 18th.
Next, you can decide whether you want to vote in-person during early voting, in-person on Election Day, or by mail. Early voting information can be found on this State of Illinois website.
However, due to COVID-19, the safest way to vote this year is by mail. In order to vote by mail in Illinois, you will need to visit this website to request your ballot. When you fill out this form, you will be asked if you need a military/overseas ballot or a standard vote by mail application. If you choose the standard application, you will then choose your “jurisdiction,” meaning where you live.
Next, you may be directed to another website that is specific to your location. Read and follow all of the directions on the website pages, and write down any important dates on a calendar. If you submit your vote by mail application by September 24th, you will receive your ballot by October 5th. Remember: If you vote by mail, your ballot must be returned in the mail on or before November 3rd.
Once you have submitted your information, like your address, the site will redirect you to a confirmation page. This page is important because the page will tell you if your application was successfully submitted!
Being A Smart and Prepared Voter
Now that you have checked your voter registration and requested your vote by mail ballot, it’s time to learn about the candidates.
One of our favorite tools is BallotReady.org. On this website you can enter your voting address, and the site will break your ballot into each race. It will then give you the opportunity to click on a candidate’s name to learn more about them and their positions. When you make a decision about a race, you select the candidate you want, and BallotReady will save your choice. When you’re ready to cast your ballot, you can use this site to pick the candidates you believe in most.
Don’t forget about the AAPD’s Voter Resource Center! These resources are helpful to people with disabilities because they collect information about candidates specific to disability issues.
Are You Ready To Vote In Illinois?
Does it feel early to get ready for an election in November? We understand that it might. Before COVID-19, many of us could wait until the week before Election Day to start preparing to vote.
To guarantee that you are able to vote this year, start getting ready today. Check your voter registration status and request your vote by mail ballot by August, and then use the time between then and late October to make educated decisions about who represents your interests the best.