May election's voter registration deadline approaching quickly
APRIL 2, 2012
Absentee ballots available for qualified voters
Secretary of State Ruth Johnson reminds residents that they have until Monday, April 9 to register to vote in the May 8 election.
"This is a terrific time to register if you have not yet done so," said Johnson, Michigan's chief election officer. "You will have a chance to make your voice heard at the polls, first by voting on local issues in May. Then later in the year you will be able to cast a ballot in elections with state- and nationwide importance, like November's presidential election."
The polls will be open on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
To register, applicants must be at least 18 years old by Election Day and be U.S. citizens. Applicants must also be residents of Michigan and of the city or township in which they wish to register.
Voters may register by mail, at their county, city or township clerk's office or by visiting any Secretary of State office. The mail-in form is available at www.Michigan.gov/elections. First-time voters who register by mail must vote in person in their first election, unless they hand-deliver the application to their local clerk, are 60 years old or older, are disabled or are eligible to vote under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.
To check their registration status, residents may visit the Michigan Voter Information Center at www.Michigan.gov/vote. Residents can also find information there on absentee voting, Michigan's voter identification requirement, how to use voting equipment and how to contact their local clerk. In addition, they will find a map to their local polling place.
Voters who qualify may choose to cast an absentee ballot. As a registered voter, you may obtain an absentee ballot if you are:
- age 60 or older.
- physically unable to attend the polls without the assistance of another.
- expecting to be absent from the community in which you are registered for the entire time the polls will be open on Election Day.
- in jail awaiting arraignment or trial.
- unable to attend the polls due to religious reasons.
- appointed to work as an election inspector in a precinct outside of your precinct of residence.
Those who wish to receive their absentee ballot by mail must submit their application by 2 p.m. Saturday, May 5. Absentee ballots can be obtained in person anytime through 4 p.m. on Monday, May 7. Voters who request an absentee ballot in person on Monday, May 7 must fill out the ballot in the clerk's office. Emergency absentee ballots are available under certain conditions through 4 p.m. on Election Day.
As a reminder, voters will be asked to provide identification when at the polls on Election Day. They will be asked to present valid photo ID, such as a Michigan driver's license or identification card. Anyone who does not have an acceptable form of photo ID or failed to bring it with them to the polls can still vote. They will be required to sign a brief affidavit stating that they're not in possession of photo ID. Their ballots will be included with all others and counted on Election Day.
Voters who don't have a Michigan driver's license or identification card can show the following forms of photo ID, as long as they are current:
- Driver's license or personal identification card issued by another state.
- Federal or state government-issued photo identification.
- U.S. passport.
- Military identification card with photo.
- Student identification with photo from a high school or an accredited institution of higher education, such as a college or university.
- Tribal identification card with photo.
Additional election information can be found at www.Michigan.gov/elections.
For more information about voting and the Secretary of State's Office, visit
www.Michigan.gov/SOS. Sign up for the official Twitter feed
www.twitter.com/MichSOS and Facebook updates at
For media questions, please call Gisgie Dávila Gendreau at 517-373-2520.