How to Vote at Home with an Absentee Ballot

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general I think it's our duty as

American citizens to vote and I've

learned over the years that the best way

for me to vote is absentee let me show

you how I live in Ohio so I'm going to

show you how to do it as an Ohio voter

but the process is probably relatively

similar in your state in Ohio all voters

whose registration information is

up-to-date have the opportunity to vote

in any election from the convenience of

their own homes by requesting an

absentee ballot and that's kind of the

beauty of it in my opinion you're able

to do this from the convenience of your

own home let me show you why that's

important this is the official

Republican primary ballot for the county

where I live and if you just take a

quick look through it you can see

there's lots going on and in fact where

I live there's also going to be a

resolution that we need to vote on and

honestly I've never even heard of this

resolution so if I was at the election

polling location and I had to vote right

at that moment I'd have to read this

understand it and make an educated

decision right on the spot and I don't

really have the ability to do that I

need time to think it out to do some

research and determine how I really want

to vote this right here is an example of

the Democratic primary ballot and you

can see there's just as much going on

it's just confusing there's a lot that

needs to be researched in order to make

an informed decision so as you can see

already absentee voting has many

benefits I mentioned that it's really

convenient you can also vote early so

once you request an absentee ballot and

it's sent to you you can fill it out you

know do whatever research you need to do

and send it in weeks before the election

you don't need to vote on a particular

day so of course you also get to avoid

any long lines that there might be at

the polling location and an interesting

thing in Ohio maybe this is the same

thing in

other states as well absentee ballots

are the first ballots counted so your

absentee ballot will indeed count so how

do you vote absentee voters who want to

vote absentee need to fill out an

application and I'm going to show you

how to do that in a minute once you fill

out the application you send it in they

will send you a ballot you fill out the

ballot send it in and you're done so

where do you get an application for an

absentee ballot what I recommend that

you do is google your state and the word

elections and then you'll find lots of

information about how to vote I live in

Ohio so I'm going to put in Ohio

elections in Ohio election information

is coordinated by the Ohio Secretary of

State so that website comes up as the

first option when I click on that I get

this website right here so now if you

just scroll down a little bit

there's some information specifically

for voters if you click on that you get

this website right here in Ohio and

probably in most states elections are

run by individual counties and their

boards of election so what I'm going to

do is scroll down just a little bit and

right here I can see a directory for the

county boards of election when I click

that link I find this right here and

I've already scrolled down to my

individual County Muskingum County and

from there I can see the website for

that particular County's Board of

Elections and if I click that link I get

this webpage right here so we had to

click a couple links to get to where we

want to be another way to find where we

need to be is to probably just Google

your County's name and the phrase Board

of Elections once we're at our County's

Board of Elections website it's usually

pretty easy to find what you need and I

can see here right on the front page

there's a link for absentee ballot links

and the first option is download

absentee ballot request this is the form

you need if you click on that you're

going to get this form opened up right


so this is the application that you

need at this point you can print it off

fill it in by hand and then send it off

to your County Board of election

location what I'm gonna do is fill it

out with you so you can see what needs

to be done and in order to do that I'm

going to download it and open it up in

Adobe Reader all right now that it's

open I'm just going to put in some

general information so of course you

need to put in your name you're gonna

need your date of birth whatever that

might be you're gonna need your street

address and this is the address at which

you're registered to vote

so those addresses need to match so

that's important my county puts in the

county name already put in the city put

in your zip code this right here is

asking you for your mailing address and

that's required only if your mailing

address is different from the address at

which you're registered to vote

mine is the same at this point we're

gonna scroll down a little bit and

here's where the forum is asking for

some specific identification and you

have some options you can see where it

says you can provide your Ohio driver's

license number or the last four digits

of your social security number or you

can use this method right here the first

two methods are much easier let's just

say the last four digits of my social

security number are one two three four

at this point you need to write in the

dates of the election that you're

interested in voting in absentee and my

local office already puts in the dates

of the next upcoming election but now

you need to pick which type of ballot

you want so if you want a democratic


of course you'd select that if you want

a Republican ballot you would select

that and so forth and at this point

you're pretty much done you just need to

put in the date

and then you can print it off and sign

the form and then again send it off to

your local Board of Elections

many states and counties have a method

for allowing you to check on your

application after you send it in let me

show you how you can do that for my

County I'm gonna go back to the Board of

Elections website and I'm gonna come

down here again where it says absentee

ballot links and you see there's an

option for check absentee status let's

click that now I just sent in my

absentee request form so they have not

received it yet so instead of looking

for that most recent form and figuring

out what its status is I'm gonna select

instead the absentee ballot that I

submitted from the last general election

when we were voting in a president

that's from 2016 I'm gonna put in my

last name my first name and then click

Submit so there are a few things that I

want to point out it shows my name shows

my address

it shows the application date it shows

that I sent it in by mail it shows that

they sent me the ballot on a particular

date via the mail and it shows that they

received my ballot on a particular date

via the mail but it's really this last

part that I find most interesting after

they received my ballot it says they

approved my ballot for counting on that

particular date and it says very

specifically your ballot has been

received and will be included in the

election night results so I'm really

pretty interested in tracking my

application from this year to see when

they get it when they're gonna send me

the ballot and then once I send back

that ballot I want to see that they've

gotten it and that my vote is going to

count in the election night results

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