How Teens Can Vote in a Primary Election

Vote buttons stack with red and blue colors

Did you know teens can vote in a primary election even at the age of 17?

Being a teenager during your first election can seem intimidating, but don’t miss the chance to make your voice heard in the primaries! If you haven’t had the primaries yet in your state, your first step is to register to vote!

This is an important step if you plan on voting at any point in the next year. You can register online, or visit a local office that is qualified to register you. Each state is different, so make sure the check your state department of elections website.

If you previously registered to vote, make sure it has your current address! If you moved, or are voting at a location near your school, you will have to re-register with your new address and information. If you won’t be home for an election, make sure to request an absentee ballot ahead of time, so your vote can be counted!

According to Adam Ernest, co-founder & CEO at Follow My Vote, “It’s now more important than ever to get We the People involved in the political process, especially the younger generations who are simply not voting due to the antiquated voting processes and systems we have in place today.”

When the presidential election rolls around in November, make an effort to get out and vote! If you are going off to college in the fall, check with your school to see if they have on-campus voting. You may be able to vote without even leaving your campus! If your school does not have a voting location within walking distance, you can contact student political groups as many of them will offer free rides to voting locations!

Did you know you can register and vote in a primary if you are 17?

Fair Vote gives you some details on how it works.

Fair Vote | Primary Voting at 17

Want to know more about how teens can vote? Check out the links below:

Rock the Vote | Register to Vote Before You are 18

Vote Smart | Voter Registration

You’ll want to check out the 2016 Primary Schedule to see the schedule for your state.

Follow My Vote is working to change how people vote by bringing voting into the modern age through development of end-to-end verifiable voting software that supports secure online voter registration.

Author: Charlotte Tuohy

Charlotte is a Hospitality Tourism Management major in the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech. As an intern at Smart College Visit, she is gaining real-world experience working with editors, researching topics, creating content and working in teams. Click on her name to read all of her posts. Charlotte also manages SCV's Instagram account @collegevisit.

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