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Procedures are in place now that will eliminate the voting registration or ballots of people who are truly eligible to vote in battleground states.

One of those persons could be you, or the senior citizen you legally registered in a canvass last week.

Don't get taken by surprise and let the county Board of Elections disqualify you. Take the steps to confirm your name isn't crossed off the rolls if your state implements the "exact match" rule which can cover middle names and initials left off a record.  Voter ID requirements come into play too.

A bunch of states have deadlines for registering by Monday, October 6 or day before, Sat/Sun. For Monday the states include COLORADO, FLORIDA, LOUISIANA, INDIANA, GEORGIA, NEW MEXICO (10/7 for N.M.), MISSOURI (10/8 for Mo.), PENNSYLVANIA, VIRGINIA, TENNESSEE, TEXAS. Check your state's deadline and link to its secretary of state site for more info here.

Below are the requirements for a few battleground states (OHIO, FLA, MICH) where registration will close soon, and/or early voting sites are open now. At greatest risk for having a ballot set aside are:

  1. people who are newly registered and did not bring the voter registration form in person to the Elections official
  2. people with dual or hyphenated last names that may differ on a driver's license and a voter registration record, such as Spanish-surnamed persons
  3. voters in states with stricter ID laws
  4. voters in states implementing exact match rules, such as Florida.


TO VOTE in Florida on NOV 4, you must be registered BY MONDAY 10/6

IF YOU REGISTERED TO VOTE IN FLORIDA SINCE SEPT. 8, then your new registration is being checked against stricter EXACT matching (middle initials left out, etc.) than it is for long-time registered voters, and election officials will need further confirmation to keep those registrations as valid for vote counting. More info below

Also when you vote on election day, you must vote in the precinct where you live, which should be the address that was logged to your voter registration card.

On Election Day, you will need to bring an adequate ID doc (see info below) that establishes your identity.

From the Fla. Secretary of State's site, this will be required for casting a vote and not be shunted off to provisional voting (a placebo ballot).

At the polls, you will be asked to provide a valid picture identification with signature. The following photo ids will be accepted:

Florida driver's licenseFlorida ID card issued by the Department
of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
U.S. passport
Debit or credit cardMilitary IDStudent ID
Retirement center ID Neighborhood association ID Public assistance ID

  If your photo identification does not contain your signature, you will be asked to provide an additional identification that includes a signature.

Note that according to SoS Kurt Browning's site info, if the Florida address on the ID is not up-to-date with your most recent address, that is okay as long as your current address is the same as the voter registration address on record with the Board of Elections. So the ID you bring to the poll is used to establish who you are (identity), not to prove street address.

"Will be resolved"

For any new voter whose Florida registration application was received on or after Sept. 8, the exact match cross-check is made against numbers in the Social Security Administration and Motor Vehicles databases.

Kurt Browning has written that any mismatches in nicknames and typos "will be resolved" – by manual review by the state's Bureau of Voter Registration Services employees.

But be aware, these databases are rife with typographical errors that generate mismatches, even though this kind of matching is being applied across a number of states this year. The federal SS Number Identifier ["Numident"] system standalone has errors at a rate of 4% for names and SSNs.

The match process in Florida works like this. For creating a new registration, the applicant has to supply either their driver's license #, state ID card #, or last 4 digits of the SSN.

If the application record isn't a match in the cross-check of DMV and SS Administration records, Browning says the Bureau is supposed to do manual checks to look for typos or nickname differences.

And if that review is not deemed a match, then Browning says the Bureau would notify the voter so the he or she can bring proof before the election: by either presenting ID in-person, or delivering an ID photocopy by fax, email or snail mail. For such a mismatch, the person is not yet registered until acceptable ID is shown that gives evidence of place of residence and of identity.

Once this is satisfied, a voter is eligible to cast a regular ballot. If the mismatch is not resolved, it can be a provisional ballot.

Advocacy groups, including the League of Women Voters, don't want the error-prone matching implemented in the weeks before the election.

Other states have considered perfect-match programs too. In Wisconsin, 4 of the top 6 elections officials in the state failed the match.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

The four failing the initial check were:
* Thomas Cane, the board's chairman. He was listed by that name on voter records but as R. Thomas Cane on driver records.
* Gerald Nichol, who had an incorrect birth date on one set of records.
* William Eich, who had a middle initial on his driver's license but not on his voter registration form.
* Gordon Myse, who had a middle initial on his voter registration form but not on his driver's license.

" ....The Government Accountability Board, which runs state elections, reported recently that 22% of those checked so far resulted in mismatches, often because of typos or slight variances in people's names."

The upshot for Florida: if you registered recently, check with your County Supervisor of Elections [see lookup for offices], and make sure you are fully registered and matched.


The rules in Michigan - You must register by Monday, October 6. You can do this at the local clerk's office [clerk search] or at a Secretary of State branch office [use the branch office locator]. (If you want, you can print the application ahead from the site . The pdf form is found here.)

The Mich. SoS site says:

You can register to vote for federal, state, and local elections by mail; at your county, city, or township clerk's office; or by visiting any Secretary of State branch office.

In addition, the following State agencies offer voter registration services to their clients: Department of Human Services, the Department of Community Health and the Department of Career Development.

If you present the form in person to register, you will write (1) the number of your Michigan driver's license or personal ID card # OR (2) the last 4 digits of your SSN if you don't have a Michigan license or personal ID card. Enter all info asked on the form, including date of birth. The registration form appears to need your signature and date of signature twice (part 3).

For registering by mail, the SoS site says this:

If you have never voted in Michigan and choose to submit this form by mail you must meet a new identification requirement provided under federal law. To comply with the identification requirement, you must:

(1) accurately enter your state issued driver license number or personal ID card number where requested on this form.


(2) send one of the following forms of identification when mailing this form to your county, city or township clerk: a COPY of a current and valid photo identification (such as a driver license or personal ID card) or a COPY of a paycheck stub, utility bill, bank statement or a government document which lists your name and address.

. . .   . . . Note: The identification requirement in Michigan does not apply if (1) you personally hand deliver this form to your county, city or township clerk's office instead of mailing this form (2) you are disabled or (3) you are eligible to vote under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.

The registration form appears to need your signature and date of signature twice (part 3).

By Michigan law, the registration and license addresses will need to be the same. But if your license address is out-of-date, the voter registration form can be used to synchronize the address of both, and then the SoS will mail you a sticker that will update the driver's license address to match the voter registration.

Michigan does not have early voting; absentee ballots are allowed if you will not be available on election day, are >60 years, or would need assistance voting. First-time registrants need to register in person in order to be allowed to vote absentee. A first-time voter who registers by mail is not permitted to vote absentee, only at the polling place on Nov. 4.

Getting a State ID Card in Michigan

If you do not have a driver's license or other acceptable photo identification, you can get a state identification card at your local Secretary of State branch office for $10.

State ID cards are free to individuals who are 65 or older or who are blind. Cards are also free to those who have had driving privileges terminated due to a physical or mental condition, or who can show another good cause for the fee waiver.

Proof of identity and residency are required when applying for a state ID card.

Identification will also need to be shown at Michigan polling places on Election Day.

Any Ohio new voter registration or a change of address must be processed by Monday Oct. 6.

Ohio now has registration and same-day early voting open until October 6.  ID needed for voting in Ohio can be:

For early voting in Ohio, ID required:

"Many forms of identification will be accepted"

For Early  In-Person and Absentee Voting -

The last four digits of voter's Social Security number; or your driver's license number; or
A copy of a current and valid photo identification, (i.e. Ohio driver's license, state ID card, government ID).

Photo identification must show name and address;

A copy of a current utility bill (including cell phone bill), bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document that shows the voter's name and current address (including from a public college or university).

Note - I don't have the state-specific information  compiled for other states. But be assured if you're a college student in Virginia (or any other state) that despite any registrar's scary notice to the contrary, you can register in your college state and claim it as your domicile. This hullabaloo was straightened out and cleared up. Any information that the state that you register in can affect your parent's tax status with you as a dependent or your health insurance or scholarships is a bogus claim. It is meant to hold down the number of college students voting through intimidation. No one has the right to query you about your "intent" for domicile any more than for any other non-student voter — that's discrimination against students and not allowed.

Originally posted to joan reports on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 04:06 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  TJ, Please post the rules for other states below- (14+ / 0-)

    I only had time for these 3 states.

    I'm especially concerned about Colorado for a variety of reasons - remember the Election Day registration lookup freezeout that blocked voters in Denver, by the thousands.

  •  Re: Ohio early voting (3+ / 0-)

    To make it very clear, I voted on the first day of early voting in Franklin County and was not required to show a physical ID. All you need to do minimally is to write down the last four digits of your SSN. That is all.

    This is consistent with the link you provided to the Sec. of State web site (note the ors):

    Early  In-Person and Absentee Voting

       * The last four digits of voter’s Social Security number; or driver's license number; or
       * A copy of a current and valid photo identification, (i.e. Ohio driver’s license, state ID card, government ID). Photo identification must show name and address; or
       * A copy of a current utility bill (including cell phone bill), bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document that shows the voter’s name and current address (including from a public college or university).

  •  Joan, thanks................ (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wanderindiana, joan reports

    ........... I wrote my 1st diary yesterday, trying to get the word out about checking ones eligebility on the voters rolls as well. Just to see it quickly fly down the diary list. And you have done a much more inclusive job.

    I'm really worried about how self satisfied too many of us are, thinking caging won't happen to us. So while we still can correct it, its good to inform those that are needing that little extra nudge to go check. Particularly if you are black or live in a majority black precinct, as these are the areas most affected.

  •  Use to check registration status (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CocoaLove, joan reports

    It works in all 50 states and will tell you if you are currently registered to vote.

  •  i'm worried, too. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    i lived most of my life in ohio...moved to california in 2004.  i can remember how i'd go to vote, merely tell them my name, they'd find in it their book, and i'd sign next to my printed name.  and that was it, it was that simple - as it should be.  
    i've lived in california since 2004, and haven't registered or voted since then (yeah, i know, i know, that's not cool of me...but, you have to understand my life has been SO freakishly difficult, that unfortunately voting HAD to fall to the wayside til now).  i just registered to vote 2 weeks ago - there's no freaking way i'm going not vote this election, though my life isn't any better personally/financially.(and though the presidential election is most important, i also need to vote no on prop. 8)
    anyhow - what worries me is that i'm not fully understanding what is necessary to vote come november 4th.  i even emailed the state about it, and i'm still not sure what kind of i.d. i need to vote.  if i get to the polls, and find i don't have the right i.d., i will be absolutely crushed, and furious as well.
    i was told that in california, as a first time voter, i need either a state i.d., or a passport and an utility bill with my address.  but, i do not have a state i.d. (i don't drive due to an injury, and haven't had the extra funds to get a state i.d.) and all utility bills are not in my name.  this is what i emailed the state about.  the reply from the state did NOT clear up my doubts.  they reiterated what i'd already read - that i need a state i.d., or a picture i.d.  BUT, they didn't mention having to have an utility bill in my name to back up a picture i.d. that is not a state i.d.
    does anyone reading this know if a passport, along with a birth certificate is enough to vote for the 1st time in the state of california?  i can't find my s.s.n. card (think it might be lost, actually).  what can i do to ensure i'll be able to vote november 4th in california?  i'm really starting to freak out that i'm going to be robbed of my right to vote, just because i'm in no financial position to obtain another form of i.d. between now and november 4th (yes...i REALLY, REALLY am that poor; i couldn't afford an extra $3 at this point)?

    [more than] 2,000 years after 1 man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to people for a change...

    by betty brown on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 04:35:06 AM PDT

    •  I will do a lookup for you over the weekend (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      and post a comment here, if no one's gotten back to you before that.

      •  THANK YOU! (0+ / 0-)

        i'm so easily confused as it is (head injury) and i swear the answer i got after emailing the state did zero to clarify what type of i.d. i would need to vote for the first time in california.  and as election day grows closer, the more nervous i become that i'm going to end up turned away if i show up with "only" a passport and a birth certificate (which is from ohio to boot!).  
        what about check stubs from prior to my work injury?  they do not have my current address, but at least prove i've lived in california, and am a resident.

        [more than] 2,000 years after 1 man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to people for a change...

        by betty brown on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 04:54:11 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Apply for a permanent absentee ballot. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Fill out another registration form, be sure to mark the permanent absentee section and initial it, and be sure the registration form is postmarked at the latest by Oct. 20.  The registration form requires either a valid Calif. license or ID number or the last four digits of your social security number.  

    •  Betty, I feel your anxiety and anger.......... (0+ / 0-)

      I honestly don't know if a passport and birth cert. will do it for you..........all you can do is try.

      But you bring up something that far too many people, even kossacks, are oblivious to. Poverty is rampant in America.

      There is a large and growing % of people that not only live from pay day to pay day, some miss out on pay days regularly, and many not because of any fault of their own.

      Unless the poor are camped out in their back yard, most folks quite happily just ignore that there are thousands of folks, perfectly elgible to vote, who are rendered inelgible due to ignorance and Republican stealth hit squads on voters. Republicans have never wanted everyone elgible to vote, they raise beariers at ever turn. And ignorant Democrats just let it happen, willy nilly.

      •  wow, socks... (0+ / 0-)

        you summed it up so well.  i've been very poor my whole life, but have somehow lived at my listed address at voting time.  it's been this election that has really hit home for fucked up it is that voting laws exclude so many CITIZENS from voting.  
        also, recently, i was talking to a friend who lived most of his life in oregon, and now lives in california.  it hit both us that, while we both are fairly intelligent people, neither of us were sure if a person's voting registration had an expiration date.  during this discussion, we both realized that it was entirely conceivable that if you didn't vote for a few elections you might not be on whatever list it is that's kept about eligible voters  - but it also occurred to us how UN-AMERICAN it seems for the government to use that list, and also a change of address where you forget to update your registration, to disqualify voters.  
        i'm old enough now, and unfortunately that equals cynical enough, to understand how much it behooves the government (especially the right-wing) that voters are in the dark about each state's voting rules.
        i think, in a so-called democracy, that something as serious as being registered to vote, should be AS EASY AS FREAKING POSSIBLE.  i mean, what does it say about our government, that they seem to do their best to make it as convoluted as possible.

        [more than] 2,000 years after 1 man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to people for a change...

        by betty brown on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 05:06:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Check with your local registrar. (0+ / 0-)

          When I asked, I was told they don't remove people from the rolls unless there's a request to do that.

        •  Betty, ybruti is right............... (0+ / 0-)

          calling ones registrar in your county is easy and they are usually very helpful, and will gladly give information, but they have to be contacted and asked.

          Republicans talk a good game on freedom, but only for themselves. Their opinions are the only ones that matter. Silly us for not agreeing with them.

    •  Take a look at this pdf (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wanderindiana, joan reports

      It seems 30 forms of id are valid and unless CA has implimented a Jim Crow law limiting the forms of ID included in HAVA, this should be the actual law.

      The biggest threat to America is not communism, it's moving America toward a fascist theocracy... -- Frank Zappa

      by NCrefugee on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 04:56:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  How to Get Your Social Security Card (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wanderindiana, bear83

    A Crushie for Democracy

    by CarolDuhart on Fri Oct 03, 2008 at 04:47:04 AM PDT

  •  Thank goodness for NC Democrats (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    North Carolina's registration 'deadline' is next week.  However, voters can still register and vote at the same time during the early voting period, Oct 16 - Nov 1.

    This means that if your address is wrong or some other issue has caused you to be dropped from the rolls, you can still register and vote right up to Nov 1st.  If you wait until Nov 4, you are out of luck.

    I am proud of Democratic leaders in the NC General Assembly who pushed these rules through, and Governor Easley for signing off on it.  More states should do this - or maybe the new Congress should mandate it.

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