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PARK RAPIDS LWV: How to vote early in Minnesota

The first day to request an absentee ballot was Sept. 23 and the last day is one day before the general election, Nov. 7.

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Early voting via absentee ballot is available in Minnesota.

No excuse is needed to vote using an absentee ballot. The first day to request an absentee ballot was Sept. 23 and the last day is one day before the general election, Nov. 7.

  • To vote early in person, go to the Hubbard County Courthouse, and ask to vote by absentee ballot. It is easily accessed on the first floor of the courthouse.  
  • To vote by mail, fill out the form available from the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office at:  Minnesota Secretary Of State - Vote early by mail to request an absentee ballot. The ballot will then be mailed directly to you.

To return the ballot, you may mail or send it via package delivery service (such as Fed Ex or UPS) or you may return the ballot in person to the Hubbard County Government Center. Voted ballots must be received by Election Day (Nov. 8) in order to be counted.
You can sign up to track your absentee ballot on the Secretary of State website at Voter Information Portal ( https://mn.gov/portal ).

Absentee ballots begin being counted on Election Day.

A voter does have the option, as long as the voter has not returned their ballot, to change their minds and vote in person. The voter can go to the Hubbard County Auditor’s Office before Election Day or their polling place on Election Day. They should tell the election officials that they requested an absentee ballot, but want to vote in person instead. The election official will cancel their absentee ballot and allow the voter to vote in person.

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The voter should shred their absentee ballot when they return home; no other voter may use it.

You do not need to be registered to vote to request an absentee ballot. A voter registration application will be included in the materials. You must show your witness an accepted proof of residence when registering to vote.

If a voter casts an absentee ballot at the courthouse, the voter can register that same day by showing proof of residency.

For most elections, absentee voting locations must be open during their normal business hours starting 46 days before the election. In addition, locations offering absentee ballots for federal, state or county elections must be open:

  • The last Saturday before Election Day (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
  • The day before Election Day until 5 p.m.

In special situations, you may ask an agent to pick up and return an absentee ballot for you. This is called “agent delivery.” This type of voting is especially helpful for people living in nursing homes, assisted living homes, group homes and treatment centers. Other special situations are voting from overseas or when in the military.
Read more by contacting the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office, using the link listed below.

League of Women Voters Park Rapids Area (LWVPRA) is a non-partisan organization. Its mission is to encourage informed and active participation in government through education and advocacy. All LWVPRA programs are free and open to the public. Direct any questions about LWVPRA activities, events or on how to join by emailing lwvparkrapids@lwvmn.org. Follow our activities, events on lwvparkrapidsarea.blogspot.com.

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