Voting in Delaware

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General Information
Election DatesPoll Opening and Closing Times
Voting in 2014 Primaries
Ballot access for major and minor party candidates

Absentee voting • Early voting 
Open Primary • Closed Primary • Blanket Primary
Online voter registration in the 50 states
This page has information relating to voting in Delaware. For full information contact your state election agency.

Registration

Delaware uses a closed primary system, meaning voters must register with a party to be able to vote in their primary election.

To vote in Delaware, you must meet the following requirements:[1]

  • United States Citizen
  • Resident of Delaware (proof required)
  • 18 years of age
  • Mentally competent

When and where

The deadline for registration is 24 days before the election. You can register to vote by applying in one of the following ways:[2]

  • By Mail
  • By Phone
  • In Person
  • Online form
  • Or at any of these State agencies while accessing their services:
  • Division of Motor Vehicles
  • Department of Health & Social Services
  • Department of Labor

Online registration

See also: Online voter registration in the 50 states

As of September 2014, Delaware is one of the 35 states that have not implemented online voter registration. An electronic form may be filled out online, but must be printed, signed and mailed to complete the registration.[3]

Proposed changes

The 2013 Delaware State Legislature is considering a bill that would permit same day voter registration for primaries, special and general elections.[4]

Bill Introduced House Vote Senate Vote Gubernatorial Action
HB 105 April 30, 2013 in Delaware House of Representatives

Voting on election day

Valid voter ID includes a photo ID, utility bill, paycheck or any other government document with your name and address on it.[5]

Poll times

See also: State Poll Opening and Closing Times

In Delaware, the polls are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. If you are in line waiting to vote at closing time, you may cast your vote even if it is done after 8:00 p.m.[6]

Absentee voting

See also: Absentee voting

Eligibility

You are eligible to vote absentee in an election if you cannot make it to the polls on election day for one of the following reasons:[7]

  • Work: The nature of your work prevents you from going to your polling place (this includes students).
  • Public Service: Your service to the United States or to the State of Delaware prevents you from going to your polling place. Spouses or dependents of the person in service also qualify. (Public service includes military, American Red Cross, etc.)
  • International: You are temporarily residing outside of the United States.
  • Religion: The tenets or teaching of your religion prevent you from going to your polling place.
  • Vacation: You are on vacation on election day.
  • Illness: you are sick.
  • Disability: You are permanently or temporarily disabled.
  • Incarceration: You cannot make it to the polls because you are incarcerated.

Deadlines

To vote absentee a request must be made by the Friday prior to the election. The ballot must then be returned and received by elections officials by noon on election day.[8]

Military and overseas voting

For full details, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program here.

Early voting

See also: Early voting

Delaware is one of eight states that allows early voting but requires an excuse to vote early. Early voting is offered in the form of absentee in-person voting and is available as soon as absentee ballots are made available up until noon on election day.[9]

To vote early you need to provide an excuse for why you will be unable to vote at the polls during normal voting hours. The following are valid reasons:[9]

  • The nature of your work or schooling prevents you from going to your polling place.
  • Your service to the United States or to the State of Delaware prevents you from going to your polling place. Spouses or dependents of the person in service also qualify. (Public service includes military, diplomatic, etc.)
  • The tenets or teaching of your religion prevent you from going to your polling place on election day.
  • You are on vacation on election day.
  • You are sick.
  • You are permanently or temporarily disabled.
  • You are incarcerated (non-felony).

See also

External links

References