It’s Voting Time – Check Your ID!

Wisconsin’s 2016 election season is under way. It promises to be exciting. Wisconsin’s late-in-the-season, April 5, 2016 Presidential Primary might even be relevant!

There is nothing quite like a Presidential Election Year.

To make sure your vote counts, follow these few reminders.

1. Voter ID is the law. To cast a ballot, you must present a valid form of identification.

Most voters use a Wisconsin Driver’s License or DOT identification card. Surprisingly, even revoked or suspended licenses are acceptable. And an expired license works, if it expired after November 14, 2014.

Other forms of acceptable Voter ID include a passport, military ID, Tribal ID, and driver’s license receipt (45 days from issuance). Out-of-states licenses are not acceptable.

Students must be extra cautious.

Student IDs are acceptable if they include (a) the issuing date, (b) student’s signature, and (c) an expiration date within two years of issuance. On top of that, students must also present a separate document proving enrollment (fee receipt, class schedule, enrollment letter).

This is the first election cycle with Vote ID, so please take the time to make sure you have proper ID.

2. You must be registered to vote. You can register at the polls on election day (if, for example, you moved and have a new polling place).

To register, bring proper Proof of Residence, such as a current valid driver’s license or DOT card, recent utility bill (including cell phones), current lease, paystub or similar electronic or paper document. One helpful tip is electronic documents can be used.

A friend or neighbor can no longer corroborate your residence.

3. Wisconsin is an “open primary” state. Voters can choose to vote for either Republican or Democratic candidates in the Presidential preference primary, without registering with any party.

But you must pick one side—you can’t vote in both primary battles!

In the balance of the spring non-partisan elections, which include many judicial and mayoral races, you can choose whomever you like.

4. Be nice! Our mostly volunteer election workers work long hours under difficult conditions.

Brighten their day by voting with an ID in your hand and a smile on your face.

If you have election questions, check the Government Accountability Board’s terrific website, www.gab.wi.gov.

Or contact your FOS attorney.

Whatever you do, exercise your constitutional right and your civic duty.

VOTE! VOTE! VOTE!