Important Voter Information:
See 2020 Updated Voter Guide Below
If you live in rural Minnesota, your precinct may have switched to "mail-in" balloting. Read more here!
Your vote is your voice as an American citizen. It's your opportunity to be heard, to hold elected officials accountable for their decisions and to have a say in important issues that affect your community.
On Election Day, every vote matters. Some elections are very close, so each vote matters in every election
In the American political system, voting allows registered citizens to cast their choice for the political leader that they believe can accurately make the choices that will make make for a better country.
The below links provide valuable information to assist you in registering to vote, finding your polling place, and applying for an Absentee Ballot.
MVA Voter Guide:
Voting Choices During Minnesota’s Long 2020 Election Season
Minnesota is expecting about 3 million votes to be cast in the General Election, and up to half may be absentee ballots. Voting began September 18 and, for now, ends seven weeks later on November 10.
Secretary of State Steve Simon (MNSoS) signed a “consent decree” with an attorney for the DNC, extending the date absentee ballots could be counted to November 10, even if they are not postmarked. That consent decree is being challenged in federal court by two Republican electors to the Electoral College.
Stay tuned and plan to vote on or before November 3rd, the day Congress set as Election Day 2020.
Where should you vote?
Nearly one-third of all precincts have switched to “mail-in only” this year (1344 out of 4110) so check to see where you can vote in person; in most cases you can vote at the county level.
How should you cast your ballot this year?
What best ensures your vote will be counted? Minnesota Voters Alliance strongly encourages you to vote either in person on Election Day, or early by direct ballot at your voting location.
Vote in person on Election Day or at Your County/City Location
At your assigned precinct (could be a new location this year so plan ahead) on Election day, November 3rd: if you shop in stores or go out to eat, you can vote in person. You do not have to order an absentee ballot, get to feed your ballot into the tabulator---and make sure no one has used your name to vote. This is the best way to make sure your vote counts and to keep in-person voting for 2022. There will be pressure to get rid of local precincts.
Need to stay in your car?
Vote early in person at your city or county location
“Direct balloting” begins Tuesday, October 27, seven days prior to the General Election, including Saturday, October 31st (10 a.m. — 3 p.m.). Like Election Day, voters feed their ballot directly into the voting machine. Get your ballot there. Be sure to destroy any other absentee ballot you were sent or ordered.
If you have already voted by absentee but want to change your vote or vote in person, you can do so until the close of business on October 20.
Vote by the absentee ballot you pre-ordered
- Return your ballot in-person by 3 p.m. Election Day to the election office that sent the ballot, not your polling place. You can get questions answered, make sure you signed and filled out the information correctly; this increases the chance your vote will be counted.
- You may NOT drop off your ballot at your polling place on Election Day!
- Unless you are in an all-mail county, counties have an election office where you can vote early in person: click here for a list.
- Here is a list of cities and towns that also have in-person voting for residents (options and hours vary).
- Hours vary but election locations must be open; the last Saturday before Election Day (10 a.m. — 3 p.m.); and the day before Election Day Monday, November 2 until 5 p.m. Some local jurisdictions may provide additional absentee voting days or hours beyond the above required days and times. Call your jurisdiction for more information.
- You can also give your ballot to someone over 18 you trust (not a stranger, candidate or political operative) to return it for you. Click here for more info. You must fill out an agent delivery form that goes with your ballot. Agents can only deliver ballots for three people.
- If the above options do not work, sending your ballot by express mail (e.g., Fed Ex or UPS) is better than the U.S. Postal Service (safer but costs more) especially if you are voting close to November 3rd.
- Putting your absentee ballot in the mail is better than not voting. It’s a good idea to post it no later than October 24th.
Other things to consider:
- What is the best way to get an absentee ballot?
- Do not use one of the pre-printed forms sent by third-party groups; they are full of errors (e.g. the wrong return address).
- Fill out a request on-line ASAP so you have time to return it in time to be counted. Here is the link
- And ideally return your ballot in person (see above) to the election office that sent the ballot.
- Track your absentee ballot by clicking here.
- If I voted by absentee ballot, can I still vote in person?
- Special Covid law for 2020 rules says,” After the close of business on the 14th day before the election [October 20], a voter whose record indicates that an absentee ballot has been accepted must not be permitted to cast another ballot at that election.
- What if I am not registered to vote?
- You do not need to be registered to vote to use an absentee ballot but registering with a ballot introduces the potential for voter error and clerical error.
- We recommend you register in advance, either online or in person. Click here for more information.
- You must be a U.S. citizen,18 years old on November 3rd, a resident of Minnesota for 20 days prior to the election. Certain felons and people under guardianship cannot vote.
- Here are the MNSoS instructions if you are not registered to vote and want to do so when voting absentee.
The election laws in Minnesota not only invite fraud and voter intimidation (e.g. no voter ID, vouching and language assistance), they also invite voter/clerical error and absentee ballot fraud (e.g. 46 days of early voting, too many options).
The Governor and Sec. Simon have used the fear of Covid as an excuse to double down on an already poorly administered voting system. Rather than working with the Legislature last spring to simplify voting, Secretary Simon coordinated with outside national groups to change our election laws in the courts. He has also failed to enforce protections against fraud required by state law. The most glaring example is his failure to enforce the requirement that citizens from the major parties do the critical work of deciding which absentee ballots get counted, and which are rejected. The party balance rule keeps the process more honest and gives Minnesotans more confidence in the outcome, whether it’s a landslide or a close call.
MVA’s goal is to increase voter participation by increasing confidence in the fairness of the registration and voting process. Minnesota has a long way to go but you can do your part by getting registered to vote, plan how you will vote and then urge your neighbors and friends to take their right to vote seriously. Support candidates who support Voter Integrity. Serve on a ballot board, take Election Day off to work as an Election Judge or drive friends or family who need help getting to the polls.