Absentee voting for presidential primary starts Friday in Minnesota
The general election may still be 10 months away but, ready or not, election season is almost here.
Absentee voting for the presidential primary will start on Friday in Minnesota, 46 days before the March 5 primary election. Voters can request an absentee ballot online, and some cities also offer in-person absentee voting.
March 5 is also Super Tuesday, where 16 states will have their primaries.
For the primary, voters have to choose their preferred party and pick from only that party’s list of candidates. In Minnesota, that choice is private and isn’t attached to any public voting records, although the political party chairs can see which voters selected their party — but not how they voted.
Three parties are considered “major” political parties in Minnesota — the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party, the Republican Party and Legal Marijuana Now. Those are the only parties that will participate in the presidential primary.
Minnesotans can register to vote, update their registration if they moved or changed addresses, or check their registration status on the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website. Voters can pre-register for the primary until Feb. 13 but those who miss the deadline can still register in person at the polling place on primary election day.
Click here to find your polling place.
And for those looking ahead, Minnesota’s primary election for offices other than the president will be on Aug. 13, with early voting opening on June 28, and the general election is scheduled for Nov. 5, with early voting opening on Sept. 20. And since it’s a general election year, it will be a busy election season, as voters will pick local, state and federal representatives.
“There is no question that this election year will be among the most intense in history,” Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon said Thursday. “The presidential candidates will likely inspire strong feelings, people will be passionate, and that’s OK. We are, after all, electing the most powerful person in the United States and probably the world; I think a little passion, a little energy is called for, it’s not a bad thing at all, we just want to make sure that it’s channeled in the right direction, a positive direction, a nonviolent direction, and that’s what’s really important.”