THE ISSUE

The deadline to register to vote before the May 3 primary looms.

OUR VIEW

Register now or check your status before it’s too late.

Surely you’ve heard the phrase “every vote counts” before, but this election it’s truer than usual. Indiana’s presidential primary election date is so far back on the calendar compared to other states, we can often feel like an afterthought. The parties’ chosen candidates are usually pre-determined before we ever get a crack at it.

Not this time, though. Both the Republican and Democratic fields are in disarray and razor-thin upsets are swinging states for candidates no one would have thought had a chance even a few months ago. The way our state votes could very well help determine who the nominees are.

But, before all that, everything hinges on you taking the time to register to vote first. If you wait too long, you could very well be out of luck. You now have less than a month to register before the May 3 primary. According to the Indiana Election Division website, the last day you have to register is April 4. After that, voter registration for the Nov. 8 general election begins once again May 17 and lasts until Oct. 11. (Mail-in voter registration applications must be postmarked before these deadlines.)

According to the IED, you have the right to vote in Indiana if:

• You are both a U.S. citizen and a resident of Indiana; and

• You will be at least 18 years of age on or before the next general or municipal election, and

• You are not currently in prison after being convicted of a crime; and

• You have lived in the precinct where you vote for at least 30 days prior to the election; and

• You are registered to vote.

You can register online at www.indianavoters.com where you can also validate your voter registration status, find your polling place location, look into your provisional ballot status information, find county contact information, and determine “Who's on My Ballot?” for an upcoming election. You can also register by mail or return the completed form to your county’s voter registration office or the IED. You can also apply in person at the voter registration or county clerk’s office, any BMV license branch or public assistance office.

You can share all the social media posts and articles and talking points you want, but the only way to have any real impact on your leaders, both local and national, is to register to vote and then actually show up on Election Day.

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