Blog Oklahoma Podcast 036: How To Vote

It’s election season, and did you know you only have two more months left to register to vote for the general election. Let's talk about that.

Welcome to Blog Oklahoma

Over the years you may have noticed a subject that comes up more than anything else here on the Blog Oklahoma podcast and that is getting you to go vote. It’s that important.

From the time I’m recording this podcast, you as a resident of the state of Oklahoma have two months to register to vote. October 14, 2016, is the very last day for to registered to vote so you can vote in the November 8th general election. That’s plenty of time, and it only takes moments to register.

So in this episode I’m going to give you a quick overview of how to vote in Oklahoma. All of the information I’m going to share, is available in great detail at the Oklahoma State Election Board Official Website at ok.gov/elections. If you have any questions at all on how to vote in Oklahoma, start there first. That was ok.gov/elections.

First off you need to register to vote. You need to be 18 years old or older, a citizen of the United States, and a resident of the State of Oklahoma. But you can’t register if you’re a convicted felon or have been judged incapacitated by a court.

You can get a voter registration form from your local county elections board, post office, library, tag agency, and at many other public locations; or you can download a form from the Oklahoma State Elections Board’s website at ok.gov/elections, fill it out, and mail it in.

In a few days you will receive your voter identification card in the mail. Keep this card is a safe location, you may need it later on.

That’s it, that’s all you have to do to be a registered voter in Oklahoma.

So how to vote.

On election day, November 8, 2016, you head down to your polling location. If you don’t know where that is, just contact your county elections board or you can look it up with the online voter tool at ok.gov/elections. Polls are open from 7AM to 7PM.

Oklahoma has a voter ID law. You need to present proof of identity before they will give you a ballot. That’s any photo identification has been issued by the United States government, the State of Oklahoma, or a federally recognized tribal government. You may use the free voter identification card you received when you registered to vote. The law allows use of the voter identification card even though it does not include a photo.

The Oklahoma ballot is a long sheet of cardstock, and all you need to do is with an ink pen is color in a rectangle next to the person or whatever you're voting for. When you finished marking your ballot, you take this sheet over to a machine near the exit, feed it through the slot, it beeps at you, and you're done. You’ve voted.

If you are not going to be able to go to the polls on that Tuesday, you can vote early at your county elections board on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday before the election. You can also request an absentee ballot from the Oklahoma State Elections Board, they will mail you your ballot, you fill it out, and send it back in before election day. Again more details on early and absentee voting are available at ok.gov/elections.

Voting in Oklahoma is not that difficult compared to other states. Yes we have voter ID, but it’s not as burdensome some other states you may have heard in the news lately. Remember if don’t have something like a driver's license, military id, or a passport you can use the voter id card you got when you registered to vote. If you’ve lost yours, contact your county elections board and they will send you a new one. All the phone numbers for your local county elections board can be found in the blue pages of your phone book or again at the Oklahoma State Elections Board website at ok.gov/elections.

As a citizen living in the State of Oklahoma it is vitally important that you go vote. Oklahoma has low voter turnout. It is a fact. And as reflection of that we get the kind of government and laws you deserve because you couldn’t be bothered to go vote. Sorry to be that blunt, but it’s the reality we live in. This is why I’m bringing this topic up now some 85 days before the general election. Every chance I get I’m going remind you to go register and go vote. As we get closer to the general election on November 8th, I’ll share more voter information with you so you can be an informed voter.

So that’s it. Go register. Go vote.

This episode's writing suggestion

is to encourage your friends to register to vote.

Top 5

Here are the top 5 things found on my desk at work as I typed up this week’s podcast script.

  1. A tape dispenser.
  2. A stapler.
  3. An old paper tape adding machine.
  4. A quad letter size legal pad with fine point Sharpie pen.
  5. A large cup of coffee with the Blog Oklahoma Podcast logo on it.

Links from this episode

This episode's bonus interesting articles

This episode's bonus musical selection

You can listen To the Blog Oklahoma Bonus playlist on YouTube or Spotify. Enjoy.

Blog Oklahoma

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I'm happy to announce as of August 14, 2016, Blog Oklahoma has 906 registered Oklahoma bloggers.

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