Voting in Texas
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Voting in 2013 Primaries • Voting on November 5, 2013
Poll Opening and Closing Times
Absentee voting • Early voting
Open Primary • Closed Primary • Blanket Primary • Online voter registration in the 50 states
To vote in Texas, you must meet the following requirements:
- be a U.S. citizen;
- be a resident of the county;
- be 18 years old (you may register at 17 years and 10 months);
- not a convicted felon (unless a person's sentence is completed, including any probation or parole)
- not declared mentally incapacitated by a court of law
When and where
Registration must be completed 28 days prior to the election. You can get a voter registration application at your library, any government office, or download one online. You will then be mailed a voter registration certificate or card with your name, address, and the number of the precinct in which you’ll vote.
As of June 2013, Texas is one of the 37 states that have not implemented online voter registration. Texas has a bill pending in the 2013 legislative session which would authorize online voter registration. The bill passed the Texas Senate on April 23, 2013. It now goes to the Texas House of Representatives for consideration.
Voting on election day
Following registration to vote, voters will receive a voter registration certificate. The certificate should be presented to an election officer at the polling place. Additionally, all voters who registered to vote in Texas must provide a Texas driver's license number, personal identification number issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety or the last four digits of your social security number.
Note: Texas' new photo ID law takes effect after pre-clearance by the USDOJ. Pre-clearance was denied on March 13, 2012. A lawsuit was filed by the State of Texas. Hearings started July 9, 2012. Texas v. Holder, 12-00128, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia (Washington).
- See also: State Poll Opening and Closing Times
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:
- going to be away from your county on election day and during early voting;
- sick or disabled;
- 65 years of age or older on election day; or
- confined in jail, but eligible to vote.
To vote absentee a request must be received no earlier than 30 days prior to the election and no later than close of business seven days prior to the election. The ballot must then be returned by close of polls on election day.
Military and overseas voting
For full details, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program here.
Texas is one of 33 states that has early voting with no specific requirements as to who can vote early. Early voting begins 17 days before an election and ends 4 days prior to election day. 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.
- ↑ Voter eligibility
- ↑ Voter registration info
- ↑ Longview News Journal, Texas Senate OKs Online Voter Registration, April 24, 2013
- ↑ Open States, SB 315
- ↑ Business Week,"Texas Photo-ID Law Vetted for Voter Bias in U.S. Trial," July 9, 2012
- ↑ Reuters,"Texas to test 1965 voting rights law in court," June 8, 2012
- ↑ Voter ID laws
- ↑ http://www.votetexas.gov/faq.html