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It’s National Voter Registration Day: Here’s what that means

This year’s presidential and congressional elections may be the most important in our lifetimes. Don’t miss your chance to have your say.

It’s National Voter Registration Day: Here’s what that means
[Photo: Element5 Digital/Unsplash]

This year’s election is a bad one to miss because of something as trivial as forgetting to register to vote. And yet many millions of people miss out on the chance to vote every election for that very reason. Sixty percent of eligible voters never get asked to register. That’s part of the reason for National Voter Registration Day—to remind people to register to vote, or to update their registration.

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Volunteers, companies, and outreach organizations from all over the country are out spreading the word about registration today. They hope to reach tens of thousands of voters who may not register otherwise. Voter Registration Day was first observed in 2012 and has been growing in visibility and voters registered. The organizers have so far managed to register more than 3 million Americans, including 1.3 million in 2018-2019.

If you’ve not registered (or are not sure if you’re registered), you can find out what to do at your state’s Secretary of State website. You can also use this handy tool at the National Voter Registration Day website that helps you find out if you are registered, and sends you off to the appropriate state website if you aren’t. You can also check out the register sections on Rock the Vote or HeadCount, which tell you if your state offers a way to register online.

Registration rules vary by state. Some states offer a completely online registration process, while others require you to request a registration form and then mail it in. The deadlines in each state also vary, but suffice it to say they’re coming right up.

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About the author

Fast Company Senior Writer Mark Sullivan covers emerging technology, politics, artificial intelligence, large tech companies, and misinformation. An award-winning San Francisco-based journalist, Sullivan's work has appeared in Wired, Al Jazeera, CNN, ABC News, CNET, and many others.

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