Voting in Maryland

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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 Maryland. For full information contact your state election agency.

Registration

Maryland uses a mixed primary system. Parties decide who may vote in their primary election and generally close it to all voters except those registered with their party.[1]

To vote in Maryland, you must meet the following requirements:[2]

  • Be a U.S. citizen;
  • Be a Maryland resident;
  • Be at least 16 years old*
  • Not have been found by a court to be incapable of voting by reason of mental disability;
  • Not have been convicted of buying or selling votes;
  • Not have been convicted of a felony, or if you have, you have completed serving a court ordered sentence of imprisonment, including any term of parole or probation for the conviction.

When and where

Registration must be completed by the 21st day prior to an election. You can register by printing and filling out and application form. You can also register in person at one of the following locations:[2]

  • Your local board of elections;
  • The State Board of Elections;
  • The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene;
  • The Department of Social Services;
  • The Motor Vehicle Administration;
  • Offices on Aging;
  • The MTA Paratransit Certification Office;
  • All public institutions of higher education;
  • Recruitment offices of the U.S. Armed Forces;
  • Marriage License offices; and
  • Offices for students with disabilities at all Maryland colleges and universities.

Online registration

See also: Online voter registration in the 50 states

As of August 2014, Maryland is one of the 15 states that have implemented online voter registration. Residents can register online at this website

Proposed changes

The 2013 Maryland State Legislature passed a bill that authorizes same day registration during the early voting period. It also expands the early voting period from 6 days to 8 days.[3] The law will become effective on July 1, 2013[4]

Bill Introduced Senate Vote House Vote Senate Vote Gubernatorial Action
SB 279 Jan. 18, 2013 in Maryland Senate Approveda on March 11, 2013, 35 to 12 Approveda on April 4, 2013, 101 to 37 Approveda w/amendments April 8, 2013 38 to 9 Approveda on May 2, 2013

Voting on election day

In general, most voters meet the necessary HAVA requirements during registration. Identification at the polls is usually only requested for voters that do not have a driver's license, state ID card, or social security card and who submitted their voter registration applications by mail after January 1, 2006; and those voters who registered to vote by mail between January 1, 2003 and December 31, 2005 and have not yet voted for the first time.[5]

Poll times

See also: State Poll Opening and Closing Times

In Maryland, all polling places are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time.[6]

Absentee voting

See also: Absentee voting

Eligibility

All voters are eligible to vote absentee in Maryland. There are no special eligibility requirements for voting absentee.[7]

Deadlines

To vote absentee, an absentee ballot application must be received by the election office at least seven days prior to the election. A returned absentee ballot must then be postmarked on or before election day if submitted by mail. Ballots can also be returned in person until 8 p.m. on election day.[7]

Military and overseas voting

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

Early voting

See also: Early voting

Maryland is one of 33 states that has early voting with no specific requirements as to who can vote early. Early voting begins on the second Thursday prior to election and ends on the Thursday before the election.[8] The average number of days prior to an election that voters can cast an early ballot is 21 days in states with a definitive starting date.

See also

External links

References