Overseas American? Here is How to Vote From Abroad!

MunichNOW Democrats Abroad There are 7 million Americans living abroad

MUNICH – (MunichNOW News) Americans in the United States are not the only ones who are worried about how to vote this year.

According to the Federal Voting Assistance Program, there are 2.9 million Americans eligible to vote from abroad. But their numbers are declining – about 7 percent in the last presidential election in 2016, compared to 60.2 percent in the country. And as a result of the epidemic, foreign voters face more obstacles than ever before, including the disruption of e-mails around the world, the closure of embassies and their dismissal.

It is still worth the effort.

“Foreign Americans are affected by U.S. law, and often have no say because even though we are the majority, we are scattered,” said Kym Kettler-Paddock, communications director for the Republican Overseas. “But the more votes we vote, the more people pay attention to our issues regardless of party affiliation.”

Voters who have never been a candidate have decided to run in the past, and this year will be no different, says Julia Bryan, Democrats Abroad’s international chairperson.

“People’s votes count, and we vote in key positions,” he said. “There are a lot of changing countries that we are sending our votes to.”

It may take a lot of planning this year, but Americans abroad can make sure they cast their ballots in November. Here’s how to do it.

Democrats outside Munich
Democrats outside Munich

Ask for your vote as quickly as you can – as today!

If you are a voter abroad, it is a good idea to apply for the Federal Post Card Application at the beginning of each year to ensure that you are elected in all primary, major and special elections in your constituency. (Americans abroad vote in the state where they last lived, even if they no longer have a relationship with the place.) But if you have not already done so, it is not too late.

The FPCA serves as your voting request and voter registration. Two websites that have tools to help you fill out and submit fvap.gov, the official US official website, and VotefromAbroad.org, a page that does not support Democrats Abroad. (One of the advantages of VotefromAbroad.org is that it allows you to print your signature electronically and send the form directly to you without having to print, although voters in some states, including California and New York, must sign in any form.) Both pages also people are there to answer your questions.

The deadline to apply for your vote varies from country to country, but only from Oct. 3, so do not delay this.

Do as much online as you can.

At a time when e-mail and US e-mail are in a state of disarray, it is best to avoid them altogether. Submitting your online voting request is a good start, and it is allowed in almost any state.

When you submit your vote request, make sure you select an email as a delivery method to receive your vote as quickly as possible. If you have already submitted your request but did not request a vote by email, you can send another one. Each state is required by federal law to ensure that ballots are available to foreign voters online.Vote From External

But this does not mean that you can use email to send your vote. More than 20 countries need more foreign voters to cast their ballots by mail, including Texas and New York. Voters from these states are the ones who are facing the most problems.

“We really want to make sure that voters lean forward and can anticipate how they will react to the election,” said David Beirne, chief of the Federal Voting Assistance Program.

It is important that voters from the local government only send their final votes before election day by Nov. 3. If you are concerned about the use of foreign air travel documents, one way is to ask the US embassy or consulate in your country to send you your vote. diplomatic bag. But not all embassies provide this service, shipping can take up to six weeks or more, and your vote would still need to go through the US post office to your electoral office. You can also use fast shipping like FedEx or DHL, but if you wait, it will cost you a lot of money.

MunichNOW Democrats Abroad
MunichNOW Democrats Abroad

Whichever way you choose, if you have to submit your vote, do so as soon as you receive it. Under federal law, polling stations are required to send ballot papers to foreign voters at least 45 days before the election, which is currently September 19. Do you want to wait longer? You can post a backup save now (more information below).

Each country has its own rules, so to make sure you know the exact time and requirements, check yours here. (Some government election websites may block external users and require VPN access.)

Contact your local electoral officer.

If you do not hear from the polling officer in the constituency where you will be voting after submitting your voting request, contact the person’s office to ensure that it is received. The same thing happens when you cast your vote (you can also monitor your online presence). And if you have any questions about your status – for example, if you have returned to the US due to the epidemic and now you cannot return home – your local election officer is the best person to ask. (And try to keep in mind that electoral offices are facing major challenges this year.)

You can access your information local or state electoral office.

Have a backup plan.

If you do not receive your vote by Sept. 19, ask your local election commissioner (see also your spam folder). In the meantime, you can fill out the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot, which serves as a backup deposit especially for foreign voters, and send via email, fax or e-mail according to the same rules as your official vote. Information on who to vote for and voting in your area is available through Ballotpedia.

If you would like to confirm that your vote has been read, submit a refund vote now. Then when your vote arrives, send it back. If all of them arrive before the deadline – which in most states is Election Day – the electoral office will count the number of votes cast, so there is no need to worry that your vote will be read twice or removed. And you can relax easily knowing that even the plague has not stopped you from saying your words.Democrats outside Munich

Democrats outside MunichThe article first appeared in the New York Times online
Author: Jennifer Jett

Original Article reposted fromSource link

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