How to Cast Your Ballot on Election Day in Minnesota
Do you know where to cast your ballot on Election Day, or do you still need to register to vote? Lakeland News spoke with Crow Wing County administrative services director Deborah Erickson to explain the process of voting on Election Day.
Tuesday, Nov. 8 is the day voters will cast their ballots for a variety of offices at the federal, state, county, local, and school district levels. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. in Minnesota.
One thing you should be aware of is where your polling station is located. You can find out where to vote by visiting mnvotes.gov, along with other information on how to vote in Minnesota.
“This can give a voter an opportunity to put their address directly into the poll finder,” said Erickson. “They can find a sample ballot of candidates who are going on the ballot in their precinct, and also find out information on where results will be recorded on election night as well.”
For those needing to register on Election Day, there are a few different ways you can provide your proof of residency at a polling location.
“The most common of that is the Minnesota drivers license or ID card that has your photo as well as the address where you live in your current precinct,” explained Erickson. “If you don’t have that, you can also bring a document along with a different form of photo ID, whether it be a passport or a veterans ID or even a drivers license that has an address from a former residency, but you could also bring that along with a utility bill, with a mortgage or a lease statement, or some type of statement like a bank statement that would also give your correct address in the precinct.”
For those with an absentee ballot that hasn’t been submitted yet, there is still time to get those in on Election Day.
“Those ballots have to be received back to our office by 8 PM on election night, and a voter can return their ballot to our office in person here at the Historic Courthouse, or they can designate an agent to return it for them on Election Day, as long as that person has not returned ballots for more than 3 voters,” said Erickson.
To avoid any errors in filling out ballots, voters are asked to read all instructions, but in case there’s any mistake, the tabulator machines will catch them.
“When you place that ballot into the tabulator, if there is any kind of a marking error, if you accidentally voted for too many candidates in a particular race, the machine will alert you to that option and give you an opportunity to correct your ballot.”
Once polls close, election judges still have a lot of work and responsibilities that they have to complete before they can return the results to the courthouse.