Absentee voting for 2020 primary election is open

MSR News Online/MSR News Online

The 2020 primary election kicked off on June 26 with the start of absentee voting. This year, Hennepin County is emphasizing the ability to vote by mail to ensure all eligible residents can safely participate during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vote early by mail

Minnesota law permits no-excuse absentee vote by mail for all eligible residents. Voters must fill out an application online or on paper to receive a ballot. Paper applications are available in English, Spanish, Hmong, Somali, Vietnamese, Russian, Chinese, Lao, Oromo, Khmer and Amharic.

Residents who are not yet registered to vote are able to apply to vote absentee. However, to make the process easier, voters may choose to register before applying for an absentee ballot.

Voters can expect ballots to be mailed within a few days of submitting an application. Election staff are working as quickly as possible to process absentee ballot applications. Do not submit duplicate applications, this will cause delays in materials being mailed. For the 2020 state primary, absentee ballots must be postmarked by election day (August 11, 2020) and received by August 13, 2020. 

Vote early in person

In-person absentee voting is available from June 26 to August 10 at city halls across Hennepin County and at the Early Vote Center in  Minneapolis at 980 E Hennepin Ave. Contact your city for available in person absentee voting dates and hours. Each of these locations can accommodate only residents of that particular city.

Voters who live anywhere in Hennepin County can vote early in person at the Hennepin County Government Center, located at 300 S. Sixth Street in downtown Minneapolis, on the skyway level. Hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Learn more about absentee voting in person

The state primary election determines the list of candidates that will appear on the general election ballot. The Office of President and Vice President is not on the state primary ballot. This office will be voted on at the general election.  To view a sample ballot, go to www.sos.state.mn.us/elections-voting/whats-on-my-ballot

Election judges still needed

While Hennepin County is encouraging all residents to vote by mail this summer, the ability to safely vote in person on Primary Election Day continues to be a top priority. Cities throughout Hennepin County are looking for election judges to handle all aspects of voting at polling places. Training starts soon, so interested community members should sign up now.

Many cities are looking for Primary Election Day support from those who are multilingual, including those who speak Spanish, Somali, Hmong, Vietnamese or other languages.

Judges should be available for one paid training for a few hours, plus a paid shift on Primary Election Day, August 11. Pay and shift lengths vary by city. Residents may be election judges in cities other than where they live.

Sign up to be an election judge in Hennepin County by going to: www.hennepin.us/residents/elections/become-an-election-judge

Election assistant positions available

Hennepin County is hiring seasonal election assistants to help with absentee balloting, voter registration and voter outreach and engagement work. To apply, visit hennepin.us/jobs.

—Information provided by Hennepin County.

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