One of the most basic rights of American citizens is the right to vote. This right was extended to 18-year-olds with the 26th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1971. Participation by college-aged students has been increasing, rising 11% in the 2000 election according to U.S. Census data.
You may choose to register to vote in your home county, or here in Washington County. College students are considered residents of Washington County for the purposes of elections. Due to the recent precinct changes slicing our campus in-half, all Marietta College students previously registered here must re-register to vote if they would like to cast their ballot in Washington County . This is due to the fact our students are no longer able to use the "215 5th Street" address to register with, but must instead use their residence hall address.
The impact of these elections have long-lasting effects on the direction of the country. As a U.S. citizen, you have a right to have your voice heard in determining that direction. Issues such as the war in Iraq, the minimum wage, and federal student loan funding are just a few positions that directly affect college-age youth. So let those that represent us know what you think!
To receive a voter registration form on campus, see Maribeth Saleem-Tanner, McDonough 204. (First Year students should receive a form in their seminar courses as well.)
Ohio voters are now required to provide proof of identity before voting. The form of identification that you may use includes your current and valid state-issued photo identification card, military identification, copy of utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or government document showing your name and current address. (Note: You cannot use as proof of identification a notice that the board of elections mailed to you.) If you do not have, or fail or refuse to provide, the required proof of identity, you may cast a provisional ballot.
(Election Day Procedures, Ohio Secretary of State Web site)
Online Voter Registration Information for Ohio Residents
Download an Ohio Voter Registration Form
Submit the completed form to your local Board of Elections.
Find the correct address, using the the Ohio County Boards of Election Directory:
Absentee Voter Provisions for Ohio Students
If you have registered in the Ohio county in which you permanently reside rather than Washington county, you will need to request an absentee ballot in order to vote in the November election. Information and deadlines on the absentee ballot process are found below.
Ohio law has separate application processes, described below, for different classifications of voters:
"Regular" absentee voters (other than militia, armed services, overseas or provisional voters)
In order to request an absentee ballot from Ohio, you can complete and submit this form OR submit the following information in the form of a letter:
- Your name;
- Your signature;
- The address at which you are registered to vote;
- Your date of birth;
- One of the following:
- Your Ohio driver's license number; or
- The last four digits of your Social Security number; or
- A copy of the your current and valid photo identification, military identification, current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and current address. (Note: You cannot use as proof of identification a notice that the board of elections mailed to you.)
- A statement identifying the election for which you are requesting an absentee voter's ballot;
- A statement that you are a qualified elector;
- If the request is for a partisan primary election ballot, your political party affiliation; and
- If you want the ballots to be mailed, the address to which you want them mailed.
All requests should be sent to the Board of Elections in the county in which you are registered.
To receive your absentee ballot:
- By mail: Unless you are a member of the U.S. armed forces, you must mail your properly completed absentee ballot application bearing your original signature to the board of elections of the county in which your voting residence is located. The board must receive your request by noon on the Saturday before the election. However, you should submit your request as far in advance of the election as possible.
- By fax: If you are a member of the U.S. armed forces or organized state militia, you may fax your absentee ballot request to the board of elections in which your voting residence is located. The board must receive your request by noon on the Saturday before the election. You may request that the board fax your ballot to you, but you must return your marked ballot by mail.
- In person: You may go to the board of elections office during regular business hours after absentee ballots are available for voting, but no later than the day before the election, and request, receive and vote your ballot at the board office.
- In hospital on Election Day: Regardless of where you are hospitalized, you must submit a properly completed and signed request to the board of elections of the county in which your voting residence is located by 3 p.m. on Election Day.
To be eligible under this provision, you must be confined in a hospital because of an unforseeable medical emergency. Your application must specify where, why and when you came to be hospitalized. If you are hospitalized in the same county where you are registered to vote, two representatives of the board of elections can deliver the ballot to you, wait while you mark the ballot, and return your voted ballot to the board office.
For your absentee ballot to be counted, it must be received as follows:
- If cast from anywhere in the United States, whether returned in person or by mail, your ballot must be received by your county board of elections by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.
- If properly returned from out-of-country, your ballot must be received by your county board of elections not later than the 10th day after the election.
Absentee Ballot Request Forms (PDF)
Students from Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia can use these forms to request absentee ballots.
The Democratic Party
The official site for the Democratic Party: http://www.democrats.org/
The Republican Party
The official site for the Republican Party: http://www.gop.com/
The Green Party
The official site for the Green Party and the Green National Committee: http://www.gp.org/
The Libertarian Party
The official site for the Libertarian National Committee: http://www.lp.org/