After months of commercials, debates, op-eds and other election shenanigans, it’s finally almost time to actually vote. If you haven’t received it already, you’ll soon open your mailbox to find your Colorado ballot. Here are a few important things to know to make sure your vote counts.
How do I know if I’m registered?
The good news in Colorado is that you can register to vote and vote in person as late as 7 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3. But if you want to vote with a mail ballot, you must register or update your registration by Oct. 26. And, it’s always a good idea to check to make sure you’re registered ahead of time. Review your registration and make sure your information is up to date.
When should I receive my ballot?
Counties began mailing ballots on Friday, so some of us may have already received them. In fact, if you’ve turned on your ballot tracker, you may have already received notice that your ballot is on its way. Many counties have offered ballot tracking in past elections. This year, it’s available statewide. When you sign up, you’ll learn through your preferred communication method when your ballot has mailed, when it is received and when it is verified. Sign up today.
Ok, I have my ballot. How do I learn about the issues?
This year’s ballot is long – it’s filled with critical candidate races and also important issues. You should have received your “Blue Book” in the mail already. It’s filled with summaries of each measure, the arguments for and against and fiscal assessments. You can also read and even listen to the Blue Book online. (It’s 89 pages, not counting appendices – really good bedtime reading. 😊) You can also view a sample ballot online if you haven’t received yours yet.
And we’d be remiss not to tell you where you can find our ballot positions this year. Visit denverchamber.org/2020ballot to see our ballot guide.
How do I turn my ballot in?
Oct. 26 is the last day that the Secretary of State’s Office recommends you mail your ballot. After that, you should drop your ballot at a drop box or vote center to ensure it’s received on time. Find the best location for you.
Is it safe to visit a polling location?
Secretary of State Jena Griswold told us her office has taken several steps to increase safety, including increasing the number of drop boxes by 55% and adding 42 voting centers so fewer people will be at each location. Election judges and poll watchers will also be required to take temperatures, wear personal protective equipment and regularly disinfect voting equipment. Voters will be encouraged to social distance and follow their local health guidelines.
Colorado is well-practiced in mail-in elections. The state held its first 2014 and had the second largest voter turnout in the nation in 2018. The state has perfected methods for verifying voter lists and signatures and conducting audits, making mail-in ballots a secure and safe option, especially during the pandemic.
Where can I get reliable information about voting?
We hope you saw our webinar last week on how to encourage your employees and customers to vote. And, please let us know if your business is doing anything creative to encourage civic participation among your employees or customers, let us know. Email email@example.com.
Now, vote early – but not often!
Happy election season!
Kelly Brough is the president and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber.