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How to Be an Informed Voter in 2020

The sentiment “It’s your civic duty to vote,” is a phrase we often hear around election season. It’s tossed around so casually that we become desensitized to the words and their meaning. But why is it so important to vote? 

Voting is one of the most hard-earned rights that our predecessors aimed to achieve. It might feel like your vote doesn’t count or your opinion doesn’t matter, but there have been numerous elections that were extremely close calls. Additionally, lower voter turnout means that your vote actually might count even more. But simply not voting is a threat to democracy and a direct contradiction of what so many people have worked so hard to accomplish.  

In a time where media misinformation is seemingly rampant, it can be difficult to discern the truth. Listed below are three non-partisan resources that can help you get to know our candidates better. 

Vote 411 was created by the League of Women Voters Education Fund and provides resources on state and local candidates in their voter guides. 

FactCheck is a great place to look for information on candidates in the upcoming election. This site also fact checks recent news stories, as well as presidential debates. It is a non-partisan website created by a project from the University of Pennsylvania. 

The Council on Foreign Relations is a non-partisan think tank that serves to provide accurate information on foreign policy issues around the world. It aims to educate US citizens on different issues such as politics, government, and the environment. 

Know the facts, determine what is most important to you, and make your voice be heard. Below are dates for early voting in each state. Find your state’s voter information site and learn about voter registration, absentee ballots, and mail-in voting.

Alabama

No early voting | Learn more here.

Alaska

Oct. 19- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Arizona

Oct. 7- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Arkansas

Oct. 19- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

California

Oct. 5- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Colorado

All mail-in voting | Learn more here.

Connecticut

Does not have early voting | Learn more here.

Delaware

Does not have early voting | Learn more here.

District of Columbia

Contact your local election board | Learn more here.

Florida

Oct. 19- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Georgia

Oct. 12- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Hawaii

All mail-in voting | Learn more here.

Idaho

Oct. 19- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Illinois

Sept. 24- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Indiana

Oct. 6- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Iowa

Oct. 5- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Kansas

Oct. 14- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Kentucky

Oct. 13- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Louisiana

Oct. 16- Oct. 27, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Maine

Oct. 5- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Maryland

Oct. 26- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Massachusetts

Oct. 17- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Michigan

Sept. 24- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Minnesota

Sept. 18- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Mississippi

Does not have early voting | Learn more here.

Missouri

Does not have early voting | Learn more here.

Montana

Oct. 5- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Nebraska

Oct. 5- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Nevada

Oct. 17- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

New Hampshire

Does not have early voting | Learn more here.

New Jersey

Sept. 19- Nov. 2, all active voters will be mailed a ballot | Learn more here.

New Mexico

Oct. 6- Oct. 31, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

New York

Oct. 24- Nov. 1, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

North Carolina

Oct. 15- Oct. 31, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

North Dakota

Oct. 19- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Ohio

Oct. 6- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Oklahoma

Oct. 29- Oct. 31, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Oregon

All mail-in voting | Learn more here.

Pennsylvania

Sept. 14- Oct. 27, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Rhode Island

Oct. 14- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

South Carolina

Oct. 5- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

South Dakota

Sept. 18- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Tennessee

Oct. 14- Oct. 29, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Texas

Oct. 13- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Utah

Oct. 20- Oct. 30, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Vermont

Sept. 21- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Virginia

Sept. 18- Oct. 31, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Washington

Oct. 16- Nov. 3, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

West Virginia

Oct. 21- Oct. 31, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Wisconsin

Oct. 20- Nov. 1, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.

Wyoming

Sept. 18- Nov. 2, dates and times vary by county | Learn more here.


Photo by cottonbro

Deviana Lal

Deviana Lal, writer at Young Hot & Modern