The voter registration deadline passed on October 5, and you may be wondering what to do next — especially if this is your first election. Here are some next steps:
Early voting opened up in Georgia on October 12. If you're a fan of getting things done ahead of time, this is for you. Early voting is convenient, you can avoid the longer lines as general voting gets closer and it could keep you and others from getting sick. October 30 is the last day for early voting.
Request and Send in an Absentee Ballot
With COVID-19, states are making it easier for voters to send in an absentee ballot to avoid the risk of going in-person. There are concerns about voting by mail -- your ballot could be thrown out if you're signature is considered invalid, it could take a while to get to you after your request is made, and it could also take some time to get processed. However, it is still a valid alternative. To find out how to request your ballot today, visit the official Georgia website.
Look into becoming a poll worker
Poll workers tend to be of retirement age and COVID-19 has caused a shortage of individuals willing to work on election days. Local and national groups have mobilized to recruit young people to sign up to be poll workers. Bonus incentive? You get paid! The pay rate for Athens-Clarke County is $10-$12/hr. To learn more about different areas, check the county website where you plan to work.
Do Your Research About the Candidates
Before you go out to vote or send in your ballot, it's imperative that you do your research on the top candidates. Here is a rundown of where Donald Trump and Joe Biden stand on key issues. Make sure to do further research!
Make Plans to Vote Safely
Practice social distancing by staying six feet away from other voters and poll workers. Make sure to wear a mask at all times and avoid touching your mask or face. After voting, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Are you the type who always keeps hand sanitizer on them? Make sure it has at least 60% alcohol. If you're feeling sick, stay home! Contact your local election office about your options if voting by absentee ballot is not plausible anymore.
Know your dates
Here are some other important dates to keep in mind for Georgia.
October 24: Mandatory Saturday voting for the November general election and special election
October 30 last day to request a vote-by-mail ballot.
For the ballot to be valid, it must be received four days before election day for in-person submission, by mail, or online.