In preparation for Tuesday’s primary election, the North Carolina State Board of Elections is providing 10 tips for Election Day voting.
1. What is a primary? In a primary election, voters select which candidates will appear on the ballot for a given political party in the general election in November. For example, the winner of a Republican Party primary will be that party’s nominee on the ballot for the November general election.
2. Who can vote? Voters who are registered with one of the five recognized political parties (Constitution, Democratic, Green, Libertarian, or Republican) may only cast a ballot in that party’s primary election. Unaffiliated voters may request a Democratic, Libertarian, or Republican ballot, or nonpartisan ballot, if available. Unaffiliated voters may not vote ballots of the Constitution or Green parties, as those parties conduct closed primaries.
3. When can I vote? Polls across North Carolina are open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Voters in line at 7:30 p.m. will be able to cast a ballot. Lines tend to be longer before and after normal business hours.
4. Where do I vote? Find your Election Day polling place at the State Board website.
5. Which contests and candidates are on my ballot? Sample ballots are available through the State Board’s Voter Lookup tool.
6. Casting your ballot: Voters will either fill out a paper ballot or use a ballot marking device that produces a paper record. If you hand-mark a paper ballot, completely fill in the oval to the left of each candidate or selection using a black pen. If you tear, deface or wrongly mark the ballot, you may request a replacement. Always verify your selections before inserting your ballot into the tabulator, and make sure you have voted all pages of the ballot.
7. No same-day registration: Same-day registration is not available on Election Day. Verify your registration status and political party affiliation with the Voter Lookup tool.
8. Assistance at polls: Voters who need assistance at the polls must request that assistance. Individuals who are unable to enter the polling place may vote curbside. Once inside the polling place, voters who experience difficulties should request help from a poll worker.
9. No photo ID: In a December 31 order, a federal district court blocked North Carolina’s voter photo ID requirement from taking effect. The injunction will remain in place until further order of the court. The North Carolina Court of Appeals also temporarily blocked the law on February 18, 2020.
10. Conduct at polls: The State Board asks that all voters respect the right of others to participate in the election. Intimidating any voter is a crime. Voters who feel harassed or intimidated should notify an election official immediately. To report an election incident to the State Board, submit it online.
For more information, visit the State Board’s website at www.ncsbe.gov.
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