Politics2020 Election


Vote Smarter 2020: Do You Need An Excuse To Vote Early In Person?

Newsy's Vote Smarter 2020 aims to provide you with all the information you'll need to safely and successfully cast your ballot this year.
Posted at 2:28 PM, Oct 09, 2020

Do you need an excuse to vote early in person?

"In states that have early voting, normally you do not need an excuse to go vote early. You just walk in and it's just like voting on Election Day," said Lonna Atkeson, the director of the Center for the Study of Voting, Elections and Democracy at the University of New Mexico.

Forty-four states and Washington, D.C., offer in-person early voting before November 3. The shortest period is in Oklahoma where voters have just three days of early voting. Minnesota, South Dakota and Wyoming opened up for early voting in mid-September. 

"We would recommend certainly that people take advantage of it. If you're going to vote in person, and many people want to, and where many people, some people have to, voting early this year in particular will avoid longer lines," said Bob Brandon, the president of the Fair Elections Center.

"Don't wait until Election Day, make a vote plan that means you certify and check whether in fact you are registered to vote in the jurisdiction where you intend to go," said Khalilah Brown-Dean, Ph.D., an associate professor of political science and Senior Director for Inclusive Excellence at Quinnipiac University.