Voting for president involves more than just showing up at the polls. Elections are more than a month away, but voting registration deadlines come as early as next week if you’re a student from out of state wanting to vote by absentee ballot.
Each state’s voter registration deadlines are different. For instance, for Texas and Arizona, the deadline is October 9. That’s just more than a week away.
Students are not required to vote in their home state. To be a Utah voter, a student just needs to live in Utah for 30 days or more before the election, be 18 or older, and be a U.S. citizen.
BYU student Hannah Wheelwright originally hails from the D.C. area, but says she wants to vote in Utah.
“I’m actually registered to vote in Maryland right now because that’s where my parents live,” Wheelwright said. “But I’m going to update my registration and move it to Utah because that’s where I’m a resident and I’ve been following the local races pretty closely.”
However, other students who have just come to Utah, say they want to vote in their home state because it will mean more, politically and emotionally.
“I’m from North Carolina, I grew up in North Carolina, and I’m voting in North Carolina. That’s my home,” BYU law student James Heilpern said. “To be perfectly honest, I feel like I would waste my vote in Utah, I mean, Utah is going to go Republican. But North Carolina is a battleground state.”
If you’re a student in Utah and want to vote from your home state, you do need to register to vote and then apply for an absentee ballot.
The website longdistancevoter.org shows the deadlines for each state and links to the application forms.