Register to vote, make your voice matter

September 10, 2019

Keith Goble


With Election Day less than two months away, it is essential to get registered now to ensure your voice is heard on matters mostly focused on local issues. Follow these guidelines and start making a difference.

Deadline to register

Deadlines for voter registration are all over the map. But in many states you need to register at least 20 days before heading to the voting booth to fill out your ballot on Election Day. If your deadline is looming or you are out of time, don’t be discouraged. Go ahead and register now so you will be ready for the presidential election cycle that begins shortly after the first of the year.

Rules for registering

For most states, you can register to vote 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 DMV, local board of elections office, post office, library or other locations designated by state officials.

About three-fourths 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, 13 states have yet to offer online paperless registration. The holdouts: Arkansas, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming.

Oklahoma has adopted rules allowing people to register online but has not yet implemented the process. If you reside in Oklahoma or any of the states that do not offer paperless registration, in-person registration is the way to go.

Check online for your state’s voter registration deadline.

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 vote to decide who you want to run your country, your state, your region and your town on Election Day.

Where to vote?

After you’ve sent in your registration form, your 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. Those options make it possible for truckers to have their voices heard no matter where they happen to be on Election Day.

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.