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National Voter Registration Day: Home

This guide is meant to inform the USM community about National Voter Registration Day (NVRD)

Are you registered to vote?

 

National Voter Registration Day is September 22, 2020. If you are a U.S. citizen who will be at least 18 years old before the next federal election on November 3rd, you are eligible to vote.

This LibGuide is your one-stop shop for information about getting registered, requesting an absentee ballot, finding your polling place, and much more.

Get in touch with a USM Library Voting Ambassador with any questions about how to register or help out with the event by emailing: 

usmlib-voter-registration-group@maine.edu

Secretary of State Maine Voter Guide: Registering to Vote (3 min.)

Secretary of State Maine Voter Guide: Casting your Ballot (3.5 min.)

Secretary of State Maine Voter Guide: Absentee Voting (3.5 min.)

Maine Secretary of State Contact Info

Office of the Secretary of State
Division of Elections
101 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333-0101
(207) 624-7650
CEC.Elections@maine.gov

Request a Voting Packet

Maine Public Election 2020 News

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Important Dates for Maine Voters

How do I register to vote?

Voting is one of the best ways to participate in our democracy and make sure your voice is heard. There are a few steps you will need to take in order to become a registered voter.
 

You can register to vote if:

  • You are a U.S. citizen

  • You will be over the age of 18 by November 3rd, 2020
     

How to register:

  • Fill out a Voter Registration card

  • Photocopy your driver’s license or state ID. We can make a photocopy for you at any Library location.

  • Get a piece of utility mail showing your name and address (if you are registering for the first time).

You can fill out a digital version of the card at the link below, then print it for mailing.

Fillable Voter Registration Card pdf

Instructions for filing out Maine Voter Registration Application

Or, you can fill out a Voter Registration Card by hand on by:

  • Visit any of our 3 campus Libraries

  • Visit USM registration tables:

    • Brooks Student Center, Gorham campus

    • Woodbury Student Center, Portland campus

    • Lewiston Auburn campus

  • Fill out our Google form to request a Voter Registration packet be mailed to you

If you are a student living away from home, you can register at either your college residence hall address or your family's home address. If you are registering in a different state, make sure to check your state's requirements for registering.

Maine Voting Resident Fact Sheet

Not sure if  you're already registered? You can check using this tool from vote.org

Once your registration card is complete:

  • Place the card, the photocopy of your ID, and your utility mail in a secure envelope 

  • Address envelope to the town clerk’s office in the town where you are registering

  • Put your envelope in the mail, or drop it off in person at your town clerk’s office

Contact & mailing info for all town clerk's offices in Maine

How to fill out the envelope:

Mail-in registration must reach your town clerk's office by October 13th, 2020. 

If you miss the deadline, don't worry. Maine allows voters to register in-person on election day at the polls.

Further information: Maine Voter Registration Data, Election Data, and Online Forms

Still have questions? Watch the Registering to Vote video from the Maine Secretary of State for more details, or ask us at usmlib-voter-registration-group@maine.edu

How do I cast my ballot?

Once you are registered to vote, you can cast your ballot either in-person or absentee. You may use any of the following methods to vote, but you may only vote once.

ABSENTEE VOTING

Maine allows for absentee voting, which is a method of voting that does not require you to physically go to the polls on election day. Any registered voter may request a ballot using the online form below:

Maine Absentee Ballot request form

You only need to request your absentee ballot once. Maine ballots are scheduled to be sent out to requestors in mid-October.

The deadline for requesting an absentee ballot is October 29th, 2020.

When your ballot arrives in the mail:

  • Fill it out with a black ink pen

  • Make sure to check both sides of the ballot, check for extra pages

Once you complete your ballot:

  • Seal all ballot papers inside the return envelope

  • SIGN the outside of the envelope! If you do not sign, your ballot will not be counted!
     

Returning your ballot

You can return your absentee ballot by mail. USPS recommends mailing your absentee ballot no later than October 27th, 2020, one week before the election. More information about election mail can be found at the USPS site.

If you prefer to drop your absentee ballot off in person, you may do so by bringing it directly to your town clerk's office and placing it in the provided ballot box. The last day to drop your ballot off in person is Election Day, November 3rd, 2020

Track my absentee ballot request

Instructions for Uniformed Service and Overseas Voters

Maine absentee voting FAQ

IN-PERSON VOTING

You may choose instead to vote in person. If you are registering to vote in-person on election day, you may cast your ballot right after registering.
 

Early Voting

You can vote early in person from October 12th, 2020 to October 30th, 2020. 

  • Go in person to your town clerk’s office

  • Request a ballot and fill it out immediately

  • Seal and SIGN the outside of the envelope. You must sign to have your ballot counted!

  • Drop your completed ballot in the office’s provided ballot box
     

Voting on Election Day

If you plan to cast your ballot at the polls on November 3rd, 2020, make sure you know where you're supposed to go and come prepared with everything you need. Find your election day polling location using the Maine Voter Information Lookup Service.

What to bring:

  • Government ID and piece of utility mail showing your name and address (if this is your first time voting)

  • Face mask, hand sanitizer, and other PPE you might need to be safe

Still have questions? Watch the Casting Your Ballot and Absentee Voting videos from the Maine Secretary of State, or ask us at usmlib-voter-registration-group@maine.edu

Candidates: Who's on my Maine ballot?

Researching the candidates that will appear on your ballot is a vital part of being an informed and responsible voter. Below are a few nonpartisan candidate guides to help you get started.

Secretary of State Guide to Ranked Choice Voting (4.5 mins)

What is Ranked Choice Voting?

In November, Maine will become the first U.S. state to use Ranked-Choice voting in a federal election. Ranked-choice voting is a method of tabulating votes that allows voters to rank candidates by preference.


photo credit: Maine.gov

Learn more about Ranked-Choice voting, how it works, and what to expect on your ballot at the links below.