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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Election Day is November 4th: Voting in Georgia--Some Tips

Election Day is Nov. 4, but there are ways to beat the crowds expected that day. Here's what you need to know about voting in Georgia. You can't vote if you are not registered. The deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 4 election is Oct. 6. There are various ways to sign up:

• Applications are available at county elections offices, public assistance offices, military recruitment offices, libraries, public schools, registrar's office or the office of the vice president of academic affairs at any college or university and other government offices.

• You can download an application from Georgia's Secretary of State's Office, then mail it to the address on the form.

• Applications can be requested by phone, letter or e-mail from the Secretary of State's Office or local voter registration offices.

• Voters can register or renew registrations when applying for a driver's license at Department of Motor Vehicle Safety drivers license posts.

• Various registration drives that are being held at festivals, shopping centers, MARTA stations and college campuses.

When registering by mail, the application should be accompanied by a copy of a government-issued photo ID, current utility bill or bank statement, a government check or pay check or any government document. The documents must include the voter's name and home address [P.O. boxes are not accepted].

No documentation is required when registering in person.

You can verify registration and polling places online or by calling local election offices.

You also can find the numbers for each county's election office online.


There are three ways to vote:

• Applications to vote early by mail can be requested by mail, phone, fax, e-mail or in person. Certain information is required: name, date of birth, home address, type of election [general election], date and signature.

Close relatives can apply for an absentee ballot for voters who are disabled or temporarily outside the country. Voters are no longer required to have a reason for voting early.

You can find more information online.

• Early voting is in progress at all county elections offices. This was once known as "in person absentee voting," but this election is the first time voters do not have to give a reason for voting weeks in advance of the election. A government-issued ID is required to vote.

• Advance voting is the week before the election, Oct. 27-31. Local election officials open more voting sites and for extended hours. A government-issued ID is required.

• Election day voting is expected to be heavy. Polls are open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. and voters can verify their polling place online. Don't forget a picture ID when you actually go to the polls.


Several organizations offer legal and other help with problems registering to vote, getting ballots, getting to polling places and voting on election day. Some of them are:

• Georgia Secretary of State Office, Elections Division: 404-656-2871, 1-877-725-9797

• Election Protection: 1-866-OUR-VOTE

League of Women Voters: 678-547-0755

ACLU Voting Rights Project: 877-523-2792


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Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tips!!! Very much appreciated.

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”- Franklin D. Roosevelt, elected president in 1932.