Although national and even state level elections are generally so controlled by big money that they don’t offer us much leverage for intervention, we can often have some influence over local politics. Though local jurisdictions are often constrained by state and national laws specifically designed to prevent communities from defending themselves against corporate interests, a lot of important decisions do happen at this level. (And more and more localities are turning to CELDF style radical legal approaches to assert the rights of community and environment over the “rights” of corporations.)
The upcoming primary election gives us a chance to get candidates onto County Councils who will represent the people and the land, rather than pandering to corporate interests. It’s extremely important that we get new folks registered to vote, and then turn out the vote for this primary. Since this is a non-presidential year with relatively few people bothering to vote, those of us who do really matter. Depending on the district, it may only take 2000 votes in this primary for a given candidate to avoid a runoff and win the seat outright. If you can bring in a few more votes by registering and turning out friends and neighbors, you can further maximize your impact.
View full registration details, or keep reading for the most pertinent information:
Where To Get a Registration Form: Many locations, including libraries and post offices, or download online (you’ll need to print and mail in the form.) Use the same form for regular or absentee status.
Registration Cut-off: The voter office must receive registration forms for regular voting by July 10, which generally means you must mail them by July 9. They must receive registration forms for Permanent Absentee voting by August 2, so generally you must mail your form by August 1.
First Time Voters: You will need to provide proof of identification, such as a current photo ID (out of state is OK) or utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and address. You can either:
- provide a copy with your Voter Registration application, or
- show it when you go to the polls for in-person voting, or provide a copy with your absentee mail-in ballot
How to Vote: If you’re registered for normal voting, you’ll receive a Notice of Voter Registration with your polling location, which will be open 7 AM – 6 PM on August 9. You can do early walk-in voting July 28 through August 7, during specific days and times. Bring proper identification.
If you sign up for absentee ballot voting, you’ll receive your ballot in the mail and need to return it by 6 PM on August 9, so generally need to mail it by August 8. You can also do early walk-in voting as described above.