Essential info for registering to vote

September 1, 2020

Keith Goble


Election Day is a mere two months away. It is important to get registered now to ensure your voice is heard this fall.

To address concerns about COVID-19, states around the country for months have been making changes to absentee voting rules.

Maine this week became the first state to revise its voter registration deadline in the lead-up to the Nov. 3 election.

Gov. Janet Mills has issued an executive order to extend the deadline to register by mail to Oct. 19. The previous deadline was Oct. 13.

In-person voter registration in Maine will remain available through Election Day.

Follow these guidelines to get registered to vote in your home state and start making a difference.

Rules for registering

Most states offer voter registration in person or by mail. Depending on your state, you may be able to print your registration form from a website or pick one up in person from the department of motor vehicles, local board of elections office, post office, library or other locations designated by state officials.

About four-fifths of all states either use or are in the process of taking advantage of the internet to simplify the voter registration process.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, nine states have yet to offer online paperless registration. The holdouts are: Arkansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming.

Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina and Oklahoma have acted since November 2019 to implement online voter registration.

To find your state’s voter registration deadline, click here.

Who can vote?

As long as you’re 18 or older, an American citizen, and a resident of the state where you’re planning to register, you have an equal chance to decide who you want to run your country, your state, your region and your town.

Where to vote

After you have completed and returned your registration form, the state will mail out details about your polling place. Some states will send a voter registration ID card, which you may be required to show at the polls. Other states require a photo ID when voting.

Many states also offer advance voting, voting by mail and absentee voting – making it possible for truckers and others to have their voices heard no matter where they happen to be on Election Day.

Visit for information on steps to register to vote. A link is available at the bottom of the page.

Keith Goble

Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.