The deadline for voter registration is long gone. Most absentee ballots need to have been cast already. Early voting ended Saturday. Even emergency absentee voters have only mere hours to complete their required rigamarole. All of which means today marks the final chance for all registered voters to cast their ballots. Some may be asking, “Where do I vote?”
For the slightly confused, completely clueless or willfully ignorant, NonDoc seeks to provide Oklahomans with a last-minute cheat sheet that will bring them up to speed on the who, what, where and when of voting in #election2016.
1. Am I registered?
If you’re not even registered to vote on the dawn of this most historical and unusual Election Day, then you can stop reading and start clicking the ads on this page while you consider how you’ve failed to uphold your civic duty.
If, on the other hand, you think you’ve registered in the past but remain unsure if your registration is valid, you can check yourself before your wreck yourself by using the Oklahoma State Election Board’s online voter tool. Entering your name and date of birth into the tool will reveal your status, including where you will be voting.
2. Where do I vote?
Now that you know if you’re even eligible to vote in this election, you need to know where you are assigned to do so. Again, the Election Board’s online tool will reveal that info along with your registration status.
But for those who prefer a little more profanity in their civil pursuits, feel free to check out this alternative database of polling locations. (Hint: Make sure you enter the address that matches your voter registration, and get ready for some f-bombs.)
Even social media has gotten into the action, as Facebook currently offers an Election 2016 menu item in the “favorites” sidebar of its desktop display. That tool allows users to find polling places, organize friends to come with, explore local voting laws, preview ballots and, of course, post a status update that they voted. Last,
Skynet Google will answer the question “Where do I vote?” if you prefer their directions.
3. Do I know the issues?
Most people made up their minds long ago with regard to their presidential preference. Likewise, straight-ticket voters who prefer anyone from one party over anyone from another will have an easier go of it than ballot splitters in the polling booth.
In Oklahoma, however, several state questions, judicial retention measures and a school bond issues will demand a decision from voters, and that can be overwhelming.
It’s probably a little late in the game to educate yourself about all of these issues, but if you don’t trust our write ups, text on the ballot will explain the gist of each state question. Just take your time, read carefully and vote your conscience.
4. What do I need to vote?
By law, Oklahoma’s employers are required to give employees a maximum of two hours to vote on Election Day, but technically you would have had to request the time off, either orally or in writing, before today.
Polls are open today in the Sooner State from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Also, it should be noted that while Facebook and other resources list guidelines for what forms of ID are accepted for you to obtain a ballot once at your polling place, Oklahoma voters may still vote even if they lack a preferred ID. Such voters may request a provisional ballot, and that ballot will be submitted in a sealed envelope along with a signed affidavit that Election Board officials will review to verify the voter’s identity and count the ballot.
Last, while you’re in the booth, resist the urge to take a selfie. While not technically illegal, the election board advises against it.
Besides, an exterior selfie on this overcast day will make a much better social media tribute to your long-suffering patriotism and civic-oriented will.