2021 Election: How to register to vote, find your polling place

People wait in line to cast their ballots in Minneapolis, Minnesota on November 3, 2020. Photo by KEREM YUCEL/AFP via Getty Images (Getty Images)

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 2. Not all areas in Minnesota have elections this year but for those that do, voters will cast ballots for city and county offices, school board, school referendums, local ballot questions and more.

In Minneapolis, all 13 city council offices are on the ballot as well as the mayor. Residents will also vote on three ballot questions, including the public safety amendment which has received national attention.

Watch live coverage of election results starting at 8 p.m. on fox9.com/live and streaming on the FOX 9 YouTube page. Complete coverage continues at 9 p.m. on FOX 9+. 

What time do polls open?

Most polls open on Election Day at 7 a.m. and close at 8 a.m. As long as you’re 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.

Where is my polling place?

Find your polling place at mnvotes.org/pollfinder. You can also get a map and directions to your polling place.

How to register to vote/check your voter registration

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

If you are not already registered to vote or need to update your voter registration, you can do so at your polling place on Election Day or at an early voting location.

To register at your poling 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 an 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
  • 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. You cannot vouch for others if someone vouched for you.

College student ID with housing list

Colleges and universities may send election officials a student housing list. If you are on the list, show your college photo ID to complete your registration.

Valid registration in the same precinct

If you are registered in the precinct but changed names or moved within the same precinct, you only need to tell the election judge your previous name or address.

Notice of Late Registration

If you registered to vote within 20 days of the election, you may get a Notice of Late Registration in the mail. Bring it with you and use it as your proof of residence to register.

Staff person of a residential facility

If you live in a residential facility, a staff person can go with you to the polling place to confirm your address. This is known as 'vouching.' A staff person can vouch for all eligible voters living in the facility.

The staff person must prove their employment at the facility. There are several ways to do this, including by showing an employee badge.

There are two other ways to register to vote, although registration temporarily closes 20 days before the election and opens again on Election Day for voters who register at their polling place.  

Register online: You can register to vote online at mnvotes.org. To register to vote online, you will need an email address and either your Minnesota driver’s license, Minnesota ID card or the last four digits of your social security number. If you do not have those things, you can use a paper application.

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

What’s on my ballot?

You can view a sample ballot at mnvotes.org. The sample ballot shows a list of of the candidates and ballot questions you’ll be voting on.

How do I vote using ranked-choice voting?

Both Minneapolis and St. Paul used ranked-choice voting for city offices. Minneapolis's ranked-choice system allows voters to choose up to three candidates and rank them in the voter's preferred order, while St. Paul's allows voters to choose up to six. If your first choice is eliminated during vote tabulation, your second-choice candidate gets your vote. If that candidate is later eliminated, your third choice gets your vote.

If a candidate gets more than 50% of the vote on the first round, the counting stops and this candidate is declared the winner.

After the second round, more candidates will be mathematically eliminated, and their votes redistributed to remaining viable candidates. Some second-choice votes will go to candidates already eliminated. If you're one of these voters, your third-choice vote will come into play. If all three of your preferred candidates are eliminated, your ballot is "exhausted."

A winner is declared once a candidate reaches the 50% threshold or after all remaining ballots are exhausted. A candidate can win with less than 50% of the vote if all ballots are exhausted.

How to vote early

You can vote early in person or by mail. Early voting began on Sept. 17.

You can vote early in person at your local elections office. Some  The last day to vote early in person is Monday, Nov. 1.

Minneapolis voters can vote early at:

Minneapolis Elections & Voter Services 
980 Hennepin Ave. E. 
Minneapolis, MN 55414

If you are voting early by mail, you ballot must be received by Election Day or it will not be counted. You can return your ballot in person no later than 3 p.m. on Election Day to the election office that sent your ballot. You can drop off ballots for up to three other voters, but you will need to show ID with name and signature when returning a ballot for someone else. You may NOT drop off your ballot at your polling place on Election Day.

Minnesota’s traditional absentee ballot requirements are back in place in 2021 after a year of relaxed rules due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, absentee voters must have a witness sign their ballot envelope and ballots must be received by Election Day to count.

You can track the status of your absentee ballot at mnvotes.org to confirm it was received and accepted without a problem. 

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