After a record-setting turnout in Delaware’s primary vote this month, November’s general election drove even more voters to the polls with Delaware’s own Joe Biden at the top of the Democratic ticket.
Earlier this year, state lawmakers made an exception to the state’s absentee voting system that will allow any voter to mail in their ballot. Out of more than 173,000 votes cast in the primary, nearly 44% were sent in by mail.
Democrats, who vastly outnumber Republicans in the voter registration totals, were much more willing to cast their votes by mail in the primary. More than 50% of Dems voted by mail, compared to less than 25% of GOP votes.
The Delaware GOP has filed a lawsuit against the state’s new mail-in vote rules, claiming it’s unconstitutional.
Registering to vote
The deadline to register to vote is Saturday, Oct. 10. Voters can register online at ivote.de.gov. To register, you must be a citizen of the U.S., a Delaware resident, and be 18 years old on or before Election Day.
You can check if you’re registered to vote online as well.
Vote by mail
For the general election, all registered voters will be sent an application for a mail-in ballot. Voters who fill out that application and return it will receive their ballot in the mail. The Dept. of Elections says the ballots will be mailed out starting 30 days before the Nov. 3 vote. By law, the Dept. of Election has until four days before the election to mail out ballots.
Anyone who didn’t get an application for a mail-in ballot can find an application online.
In addition to mailing in your ballot, you can also drop it off in person at any of the three-county election offices. There’s also a designated dropbox in the lobby of the Carvel State Office Building at 820 N. French Street in Wilmington.
If you requested a vote-by-mail ballot, but haven’t returned it, you can still vote in person. The Dept. of Elections said to let workers at your polling place know and they’ll contact the department to void the unreturned vote-by-mail ballot. You’ll then be allowed to vote in person.
The Dept. of Elections has a list of frequently asked questions on its website.
Delaware is considered a “ballot-in-hand” state, meaning the Dept. of Election will only count ballots received by the time polls close on Election Day at 8 p.m.
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