Over 7.3 Million Michigan Residents Are Registered to Vote – Are You One of Them?

Today is National Voter Registration Day — the ideal time to register to vote, if you haven’t already, or to update your address or name if you’ve moved or had a name change since the last election.

Don’t miss out on voting in the upcoming General Election on November 6 – it’s your right and your civic duty as an American citizen, and an opportunity to have  a say in what’s happening in your community and in this country. There’s a lot at stake, and this election will impact the future! In 2008, 6 million Americans didn’t vote because they missed the registration deadline or didn’t know how to register. In 2012, we want to make sure NO ONE is left out.

If you are registered in Michigan and ready to vote, kudos to you! If not download and complete the Michigan voter registration application. Remember, Michigan’s deadline to register to vote in the upcoming election is October 9. (You can also use this form to change your name or address on your voter registration.) Submit your completed application to your city/township clerk’s office (addresses are right on the form). Once your application is processed you will be mailed a voter registration card that tells where your polling location is.

Not sure if you are registered to vote in Michigan, or if your address and name are up-to-date? Go to Michigan’s Voter Information Center and type in the information asked for. What’s really neat is that it not only lists your polling location, a map for getting there, and how to contact your local clerk (they can answer any voting questions you have), but you can view your sample ballot including the Citizen Research Council of Michigan’s analysis of the ballot proposals. That way you can “study up” so you make thoughtful decisions at the polls on November 6.

If you won’t be able to get to your polling location on election day, you can vote by absentee ballot. While Michigan doesn’t have early voting, voting by absentee ballot is an easy and convenient way to cast your vote if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You expect to be absent from the community where you are registered for the entire time the polls are open on Election Day (7 am-8 pm in Michigan)
  • You are physically unable to attend the polls without assistance
  • You cann0t attend the polls due to a religious conflict
  • You have volunteered to work at the polls
  • You are over 60
  • You are in jail awaiting arraignment or trial

If you meet one of these criteria, you can download Michigan’s absentee voter ballot application, and then complete and send it to your local clerk’s office. It’s important to note that your local clerk must receive your completed absentee ballot application no later than 2 pm on the Saturday before the election, which for this year’s General Election is Saturday, November 3. An absentee voter ballot will be mailed to the address you specify on the application. You then have until 8 pm on Election Day to complete the ballot and return it to your local clerk’s office. Under Michigan law, if you register to vote by mail, you must appear in person to vote in the first election in which you  participate (unless you are over 60 years old, disabled or an overseas voter.)

Spread the word and encourage others to register to vote, too! No matter what state folks live in, they can go to the official National Voter Registration Day website at nationalvoterregistrationday.org.

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