VOTING PROCESS - I
We elect Federal, State, & Local representatives to represent us at all three levels.
If we don’t vote, others choose our representatives and the issues they champion.
Don’t vote? Don’t complain.
The lowest turnout is for local elections - the elections that have the most impact on our daily lives.
You are eligible to vote if you are a US Citizen who is age 18 or older... and register.
When you register, you have to choose a party.
Choose one that aligns with your values and/or one that lets you vote in primary elections. Only Democrats and Republicans vote in primaries in PA.
You can register online, by mail, at a photo license center, at a registration drive.
Know how to reach your county election office. That office can help you register, tell you where your polling station is, provide sample ballots, absentee ballots...
633 Court St.
150 N Queen St.
400 S 8th St.
17 S 7th St.
439 Swede St.
420 N Centre St.
28 E Market St.
You can also find your polling station at https://www.pavoterservices.pa.gov/Pages/PollingPlaceInfo.aspx
You must show ID the first time you vote at a polling station. If there is difficulty with your registration, the polling station can accept a provisional ballot from you. If you will be away from home on Election Day, you can get an absentee ballot. If you want to vote for someone who is not on the ballot, you can write in a candidate to vote for him/her.
Rules and Regulations
You can request assistance in the voting booth if you need it.
You may not take photos inside of the booth.
You should not make calls inside of the booth
You will be allowed to vote if you are in line by 8 PM.
Candidates and their representatives must stay outside of the polling station, at least 10 feet from the door. No one may try to influence you inside of the polling station. No campaign materials are allowed inside of the polling station.
Voter suppression and intimidation
Some voters encounter barriers to registration and voting - Voter suppression is a strategy to influence the outcome of an election by discouraging or preventing people from voting. The tactics of voter suppression range from minor changes to make voting less convenient, to physically intimidating prospective voters - both of which are illegal.
Voter suppression and intimidation most frequently target minorities and people who have lower income.
Fraud and Inaccuracies
False identities - infrequent and unlikely
Compromised technology - infrequent and unlikely (more likely than before)
Gerrymandering - frequent and common - will be covered in Session II
BEFORE ELECTION DAY
Get a list of candidates from your county election office
Do some research
Get sample ballots for your precinct from your county election office
If an online sample ballot is not accessible, call or visit the office to get one
Know how you plan to vote before you walk in
Make a plan for how you will include voting on election day.
How will it fit into your workday, the schedule for picking up kids, etc.
How will you get there? Car, bus, train, taxi? How long will it take?
Fill in the sample ballots for your precinct from your county election office.
Know how you plan to vote before you go.
Go do it.
Vote in EVERY election - the local elections are where we choose people who will influence our daily lives and incubate tomorrow’s state and national leaders.