LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - As the election draws near, many have questions about the voting process.
Below is information for voters in Wisconsin and Minnesota, along with links to relevant websites, designed to help answer those questions you may have.
Where can I find voting information for Wisconsin?
My Vote Wisconsin has the information you need to find out how to register, vote absentee, polling locations, and what is on the ballot in the November election. https://myvote.wi.gov/en-us/
What are the deadlines for registering to vote in Wisconsin? How do I register?
The deadline to register online or by mail (is postmarked) is October 14. Click here to learn what documents you'll need to register either online or by mail. People can still register to vote in their municipal clerk's office up until October 30. After that, you can only register in-person at your polling location on election day. Get more details on what you'll need to bring to the polls here. If you're registering, including identification and proof of residence. Also, here's a graphic of what's acceptable for documentation.
In Wisconsin, the residency requirement in order to vote is 28 days. If a person is a resident for less than that time, they are required to vote from their prior residency where they can establish the 28 days.
How do I vote in person in Wisconsin?
If you are already registered, you can go to your polling place on Election Day, show your photo ID, sign the poll book, then vote. To find your polling place, click here. All polling locations are ADA compliant, so everyone can access the polls.
What do I need to do to vote absentee?
The State of Wisconsin is mailing absentee ballot applications to any resident who doesn't currently have a request in for an absentee ballot. The deadline to request an absentee ballot is October 29.
If you do vote absentee, there's a couple of things you'll need to do. The first is to follow the instructions provided by the municipality to make sure your vote counts. This includes having a witness verify you completed the ballot. The witness needs to sign the form as well as provide their address. The voter needs to sign the paperwork as well. The witness signature, address, and voter signature are all required for the absentee ballot to count. Click here for instructions.
The deadline for returning your ballot is 8 pm on election day. It is highly recommended that absentee ballots be mailed at least one week ahead of election day to make sure it arrives in time. Some municipalities are offering drop boxes to avoid potential delays with the mail. For La Crosse residents, for example, the dropbox is located in the parking lot of City Hall.
Can I vote early?
Another option is voting early in-person. This starts on Tuesday, October 20, and continues through Sunday, November 1 in Wisconsin. Each city, village, and town in Wisconsin is responsible for setting the dates and hours of in-person absentee voting for their municipality. To find the hours for in-person absentee voting where you live, contact your municipal clerk. You can also find the information on each county clerk's website starting on October 6. You will need to show an acceptable photo ID when doing so. To find out what is acceptable ID, click here.
Where can I find voting information for Minnesota?
The Minnesota Secretary of State has a website that contains information on how to register, how to vote, and what's on the ballot. Click here to go to the site.
What are the deadlines for registering to vote in Minnesota? How do I register?
In Minnesota, the deadline for registering online is at 11:59 p.m. 21 days before the election. The deadline to register on paper is 5 p.m. 21 days prior to the election. After that, you can register on Election Day at your polling place.
To vote in Minnesota, you must be:
- A U.S. Citizen
- At least 18 years old on Election Day
- A resident of Minnesota for at least 20 days
- Finished with all parts of any felony sentence
- You can vote while under guardianship unless a judge specifically has revoked your right to vote
- You cannot vote if a court has ruled that you are legally incompetent
How do I vote in person in Minnesota?
First, find your polling location. The polls are open from 7 a.m. To 8 p.m. Once you arrive at the polling location, if you are registered, you can write your signature next to your name on the list of registered voters.
If you need to register before voting, you must show proof of your current address. Click here for a list of types of IDs and documentation you can bring.
Once registered, you'll receive your ballot to fill out. If you make a mistake, you can ask for another one.
What do I need to do to vote absentee?
In Minnesota, you can vote early with an absentee ballot starting 46 days before Election Day. You can request an absentee ballot online. Through the Secretary of State's website, you can also track the status of your absentee or mail ballot. Due to COVID-19, there is no witness requirement for registered voters for the November election. Non-registered voters will still need a witness, to indicate their proof of residence according to the state.
Ballots must be postmarked on or before Election Day November 3 and received by your county within the next seven calendar days (November 10.)
If you want to return your ballot in person, you can do so no later than 3 pm on Election Day to the election office that sent your ballot. The state says you cannot drop your ballot off at your polling place on election day.
Can I vote in-person before November?
Yes. You can do so starting 46 days before the election. The first day to vote early in-person is Friday, September 18. The last day to vote early in-person is Monday, November 2.
The state also says that “locations offering absentee ballots for federal, state, or county elections must be open:
- The last Saturday before Election Day (10 a.m.-3 p.m.)
- The day before Election Day until 5 p.m.
- This does not apply to school districts holding standalone elections.