Questions about 2014 Elections You Were Afraid to Ask

If you ever go on Facebook, you probably caught that early voting began yesterday for many states. Here at PIE, we want you to express your voice in the elections. If you aren’t sure when or why to vote, this article should give you the information to put you on the right path. We’ve pulled from some of the most up-to-date voter info for 2014 together in the post about early elections, voter ID laws and where to get your info.

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Voter Registration

Hopefully you are already registered to vote at your current precinct. Some states will let you register and vote on the same day. The 12 states that allowsame day registration are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, plus Washington D.C. Utah has a pilot program for same day registration going on this election, as well.  If you missed the deadline, PLEASE register to vote for 2016.

No Early Voting

Early voting happens in 43 states. But even these 7 states that are “no early voting” have special rules. If you cannot vote on election day for a legitimate reason, you can get an excuse. States without early voting are Alabama, Connecticut, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island.

Special Requirements to Vote Early

There are 8 states with specific early voting rules that vary from state to state. These states usually require special situations before you can vote, like religious holidays, work schedules or physical disability. The 8 states are DelawareKentuckyMassachusettsMinnesotaMissouriNew YorkSouth Carolina, and Virginia.

Voting Rules in New Jersey

New Jersey is run on a county-by-county basis. Get more information about voting in New Jersey here.

Early Voting for Everyone!

34 states allow early voting without any requirements whatsoever. Here’s the whole list: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

When is Early Voting?

Right now. If you are in an early voting state, you can vote today! Early voting, in every state that allows it, has already started and will go on until October 29th in most cases.

Voter ID Laws

There has been a lot of discussion on voter ID laws in the press recently. Here is where you need to have one. Photo ID needed in Georgia, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas. Some states require an ID, but it doesn’t need a photo: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Virginia, and Washington.

Make an Informed Vote

Do some research before you head to the polls. There are lots of websites out there that can help you find information at every level of government. We suggest googling your county and checking out what is there. Also, check out information from your local Republican/Democrat/Tea Party groups. Be wary of “nonpartisan” information. Make your own decision in the ballot box. Prove the old people wrong: Millennials will show up to vote this year.

Your Vote Matters

Its a fundamental right as an American to vote in local elections. While choosing congress is incredibly important, don’t remember your state and city control much more of your everyday life. These smaller elections really can be decided by one vote.

Run don’t walk. Vote in the 2014 Elections!

hurry

This is how you should look after reading this post: scrambling to go vote RIGHT NOW.

About Katrina Jorgensen

Katrina Jorgensen is a devoted advocate for Millennial issues with deep concerns over the direction of America's foreign policy. She seeks to promote political education and empowerment for her generation. You can find her on Twitter @Veribatim. With her focus on Eurasia, Katrina acts as Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Young Republican National Federation, part of their International Committee. She is a writer and communication specialist in her day job. She regularly contributes to conservative blogs such as Red Alert and IJReview. She has worked as freelance journalist for think tanks, major media outlets and print newspapers. For 6 years, she ran her own web design and consulting company in Texas. Her true passion is non-profits. Katrina has worked for and advised multiple international NGOs. She volunteers her time and provides marketing advice to local charities and other not-for profit-organizations. Katrina also loves reading wonky foreign policy blogs, instgramming her cooking experiments, losing herself in a fiction novel, and exploring new places with her husband, Kai.