Here’s what Texans need to know about voting in the November 2023 election

The last day to register to vote is coming up. Here are important dates and information to know ahead of Election Day.

By Megan Cardona, KERA NewsOctober 5, 2023 8:30 am, ,

From KERA News:

Early voting starts in just a few weeks for the upcoming election on Nov. 7. The last day to register to vote is Oct. 10.

While there aren’t any big-ticket races like president, governor or senator on this year’s ballot, Texas voters will get to decide the fate of several proposed constitutional amendments.

The amendments are a chance for Texans to directly vote on state policy changes and funding like Proposition 3, which prohibits a wealth tax, or Prop 9, which would put more money into the teacher retirement fund.

“The state legislature likes the idea of sometimes putting these bills into the constitutional form. So, it provides a degree of stability that is hard to change,” said Brent Boyea, political science professor at the University of Texas at Arlington. “It’s an opportunity to create stability to things that people care about.”

Here are important dates and information to know if you plan on voting this election season.

Registering to vote

When is the last day to register?

Oct. 10 is the last day to register to vote.

Who can register?

You can vote if you are:

– A U.S. citizen.

– A resident of the county where you’re registering.

– 18 years or older on Election Day.

– Not a convicted felon.

Where can I register to vote?

Most people can’t register to vote online — but you can print out a voter registration application on the Secretary of State’s website.

The application can be mailed in to your local county voter registration official, and must be postmarked by the Oct. 10 registration deadline. You can also drop off your application in person by Oct. 10.

If you’re renewing your driver’s license before Oct. 10, you can register to vote online through the Texas Department of Public Safety.

How can I check my voter registration status?

If you have a driver’s license, you may already be registered to vote.

Check your voter registration status on the Secretary of State’s My Voter Portal using your driver’s license number, your voter unique identifier number or by your name, county and date of birth.

How can I update my voter registration?

If your name or address has changed since the last election, you can update your registration for free through the Secretary of State’s online portal.

Voting by mail

When is the last day to apply to vote by mail?

The last day to apply for a mail-in ballot is Oct. 27.

If you’re mailing your application back, county election officials must receive it by Oct. 27.

Who can vote by mail?

You may qualify to vote by mail if you are:

– 65 years or older.

– Sick or disabled.

– Out of the county on Election Day and during the early voting period.

– Expected to give birth within three weeks before or after Election Day.

– Confined in jail, but otherwise eligible.

How do I apply to vote by mail in Texas?

You can either print the mail-in ballot application PDF or order an application onlinethrough the Secretary of State’s website.

Complete sections 1-4 on the application, then sign and date Section 5. If another person helped you with your application, you must fill out Section 6.

If you printed the application, place it in your own envelope and add postage.

If you ordered the application online and it was mailed to you, fold the application in half, seal it and add postage.

Address and mail the application to the early voting clerk in your county. This address can be found on your county’s elections department website.

When is the last day to submit a mail-in ballot?

Election officials must receive mail-in ballots on Election Day, Nov. 7, at 7 p.m. if it’s not in a postmarked envelope.

If the envelope is postmarked by 7 p.m. on Election Day, it must be received by Nov. 8 at 5 p.m.

Voting in person

Does Texas require an ID to vote?

Yes. Make sure to bring one of the following acceptable forms of photo ID to vote:

– Texas driver’s license

– Texas election identification certificate

– Texas personal identification card

– Texas handgun license

– U.S. military identification card with your photo

– U.S. citizenship certificate with your photo

– U.S. passport, either book or card

Where can I vote?

Many counties in Texas have opted for county-wide voting, meaning registered voters can go to any polling location within the county where they’re registered. You can find your polling site on the My Voter Portal.

When can I vote?

You can vote early in-person from Oct. 23 through Nov. 3.

Election Day is Nov. 7.

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