2020 election: How to register to vote, find your polling place, vote by mail in Minnesota

BEMIDJI, MN - SEPTEMBER 18: A voter leaves after filling out their ballot at the Beltrami County Administration building on September 18, 2020 in Bemidji, Minnesota. Early voting starts today in Minnesota as President Donald Trump and Democratic pres (Stephen Maturen/Getty Images / FOX 9)

The 2020 general election is Tuesday, Nov. 3. 

In Minnesota, voters will cast their ballots for the next president, a U.S. senator and who they want to represent them in the state Legislature and in Congress, among other things. You can see what is on your ballot at mnvotes.org

Most polls will open on Election Day at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. As long as you are in line by 8 p.m. you will be allowed to vote, even if you do not reach the front of the line until after 8 p.m. 

Early voting is well underway in Minnesota, but whether you choose to vote early, by mail or on Election Day, you must be registered to vote. Eligible voters can pre-register until Oct. 13. You can also register to vote at your polling place on Election Day. 

HOW TO REGISTER TO VOTE/CHECK YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION 

You can check your voter registration or register to vote at mnvotes.org

Election officials stress it is important to make sure you are registered at your current address. If you have moved, you will need to update your voter registration. 

If you are not registered to vote, you have three options to register: online, by paper or on Election Day. 

Register online: You can register to vote online at mnvotes.org. You will need your Minnesota driver’s license or Minnesota identification card number, or the last four numbers of your Social Security number. 

Register on paper: You can download and print a voter registration application from mnvotes.org. Applications can be mailed or dropped off to either your county election office or to the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office at: 

Secretary of State
60 Empire Dr.
Suite 100
Saint Paul, MN 55103

Register on Election Day: You can register or update your registration when you vote, whether that is at your polling place on Election Day or at an early voting location. 

To register at your polling place on Election Day (or at an early voting location), you need to bring one of the following for proof of residence: 

ID with current name and address

  • Valid Minnesota driver’s license, learner’s permit or ID; or a receipt for any of these
  • Tribal ID with name, address, photo and signature

Photo ID AND a document with current name and address

Approved photo IDs (the ID can be expired): 
•    Driver's license, state ID or learner’s permit issued by any state
•    U.S. Passport
•    U.S. Military or Veteran ID
•    Tribal ID with name, signature and photo
•    Minnesota university, college or technical college ID
•    Minnesota high school ID

Approved documents with current name and address (can be shown on electronic device): 

  • Bill, account or start-of-service statement due or dated within 30 days of the election for: Phone, TV or internet Solid waste, sewer, electric, gas or water Banking or credit card Rent or mortgage
  • Phone, TV or internet
  • Solid waste, sewer, electric, gas or water
  • Banking or credit card
  • Rent or mortgage
  • Residential lease or rent agreement valid through Election Day
  • Current student fee statement

Registered voter who can confirm your address

A registered voter from your precinct can go with you to the polling place to sign an oath confirming your address. This is known as 'vouching.' A registered voter can vouch for up to eight voters. 

A full list of what you need to bring with you to register to vote on election day can be found here

WHERE TO VOTE

You can look up you polling place at mnvotes.org. You can also get a map and directions to your polling place. 

WHAT TIME DO THE POLLS OPEN AND WHEN DO THEY CLOSE? 

Most polls will open on Election Day at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. As long as you are in line by 8 p.m. you will be allowed to vote, even if you do not reach the front of the line until after 8 p.m. 

HOW TO VOTE EARLY IN PERSON

You can vote early in person at your county election office. In addition to your county election office, some cities and towns offer in-person voting.

The last day to vote early in person is Monday, Nov. 2. 

Find your early voting location at mnvotes.org.

HOW TO VOTE EARLY BY MAIL 

For those who want to vote by mail, you can apply have an absentee ballot mailed to you at mnvotes.org. You can send your ballot back anytime between now and Election Day. Ballots will still be counted if they are postmarked on Election Day so long as it is received within seven days. 

You can return your absentee ballot in person. You can deliver your absentee ballot in person no later than 3 p.m. on Election Day to the election office that sent you your ballot or have someone drop it off for you. You cannot drop your ballot off at your polling place on Election Day. 

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Anyone who is eligible to vote in Minnesota can vote by mail. 

You can check the status of your absentee ballot at mnvotes.org/track. It can tell you whether your ballot was received by election officials on which date it was received and whether it has been counted or is still being processed. 

VOTED EARLY, BUT WANT TO CHANGE YOUR VOTE? HERE’S HOW 

If you already returned you ballot and want to change your vote, you can ask to cancel your ballot until the close of business two weeks before Election Day. After that time, you cannot cancel your ballot. 

To cancel your ballot, contact the election office that sent your ballot. Your options are to have a new ballot mailed, vote in person at your local election office or vote at your polling place on Election Day.

HOW TO REPORT A VOTING/POLLING PROBLEM 

If you believe that election misconduct, discrimination, voter intimidation, or other irregularities have occurred, you can file a complaint with your county attorney’s office. 

If you have information about election security, data privacy or possible improper election activities, you can contact the Minnesota Secretary of State’s Office by phone at 1-877-600-VOTE (8683) or by email at elections.dept@state.mn.us

More information can be found at mnvotes.org