I Thought I Couldn’t Vote Because….

  • I moved within my county and forgot to re-register!

No problem – go to your correct precinct, or any precinct within your county and ask for a provisional ballot.  Your provisional ballot will be verified after the election and your votes for all offices, propositions and measures to which you were entitled to vote (based on where you live) will be counted.

Unfortunately, if you moved out of your county your vote cannot be counted unless you re-registered.

  • I’m registered to Vote-by-Mail but I lost my ballot!

No problem.  Go to your voting precinct and tell the precinct captain your ballot was lost, destroyed, or eaten by your dog.  No matter what, make sure you get a provisional ballot — so long as you are not voting twice, your provisional ballot vote will be counted.

Stil have your Vote-by-Mail ballot.  That’s OK too, just surrender it at your polling place and you can vote in person.

  • My name isn’t on the polling roster at my precinct!

Not your problem.  Mistakes happen, just ask for a provisional ballot.  So long as you are in the right county (kinda hard to miss that one) your vote will count.

  • I’d love to vote on Tuesday, but November 2 is my pet rock’s birthday and we plan to fly to Vegas!

Well, you’ve got to have your priorities… Its OK, though, you can vote early.  Check your local county’s website (click on the link under “Useful Resources” on the right side of the PolitoMuse homepage) for you “Early Voting” location and git-er-done!

  • Where is my polling place again?

Checkout the California Secretary of State’s “Find Your Polling Place” page and select your county.  We have a lot of Silicon Valley (i.e., Santa Clara County) readers so here is your link

  • Oh crap I’ve procrastinated and didn’t mail by Vote By Mail (aka absentee ballot) yet, can I still vote?

Yes! You have two other options for getting your vote in and counted.  Some of this varies by county a bit, so check your county elections official for specifics.

  1. Return it in person to a polling place or elections office in your county before or on Elections Day. Many counties will have authorized VBM ballot drop-offs locations, like City Halls for your convenience.
  2. Authorize a relative or person living in the same household as you to return the ballot on your behalf.
  • I sent in my Vote By Mail/provisional ballot but how do I know it was counted?

After that whole dangling chad incident in Florida, people have gotten awfully persnickety about knowing whether or not their ballot was counted. Well good news, there is a law for that. Under the Federal Help America Vote Act of 2002, every voter who casts a provisional ballot is entitled to find out from his/her county elections official if the ballot was counted and if not, the reason why it was not counted. Similarly, the Elections Code section 3017, vote by mail voters can also track their ballots.  Again this tracking process varies by county so click here to find the appropriate website or phone number by county to track your ballot.

Voting is a privilege, a right, and a duty.  Learn the positions of the candidates, analyze the propositions and measures, and make your vote count.


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  1. PolitoMuse’s Handy Voting Guide « PolitoMuse

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