Looking Ahead to the 2020 General Election!

The 2020 General Election is fast approaching and Equality Virginia is committed to making sure that you have all of the information you need to register and vote on or before November 3rd!

According to the Williams Institute, nearly nine million LGBTQ adults across the country are registered and eligible to vote in the 2020 general election. About 260,000 LGBTQ adults live in Virginia, and every single vote matters.

Elections are high stakes, and voting is one of the most important ways that we can shape the future of LGBTQ equality in Virginia and in our nation. While Virginia has recently made great strides towards protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination, the federal administration has rescinded key protections for transgender students, banned transgender troops from serving openly in the military, and repeatedly pushed policies that open the door to discrimination against LGBTQ people in healthcare, housing, and public accommodations. Our elected officials are in a position to improve – or harm – the lives of LGBTQ people. That’s why, when it comes to advancing equality, who we elect matters. Your voice will impact this election.

We know that the election process in any year can be confusing, but this year will be especially unique for every voter. Due to COVID-19, you should start thinking about how you plan to vote this year. There are several options to choose from, which will help keep people healthy, while still giving you access to the polls. This year, you will need to make a plan to either: 1) vote by mail, 2) vote early in-person, or 3) vote in-person on Election Day.

So, are you ready to vote? To help you prepare and make a voting plan, we’ve compiled all of the resources you need to be an informed voter:

Register to Vote

Registering to vote is the first step in preparing for the General Election on November 3rd and this year, it is especially important for Virginians to register to vote early.

Be sure to register to vote by the October 13th deadline or check your voting status.

Request to Vote by Mail

Virginians can opt to vote by mail, and no reason is necessary. Request to vote absentee before October 23rd, and as long as your ballot is postmarked by Election Day, your vote will be counted.

You can request your ballot online or fill out and submit this form to your local voter registration office by October 23rd.

Early Voting 

Starting September 18th, any registered Virginia voter can show up to their local voter registration office or satellite voting center to vote early in-person. The last day for early in-person voting is October 31st.

When voting early, be sure to take your ID or other acceptable document to verify your identity.

 

Find Your Polling Place 

If you plan to vote on Election Day, polls will be open to any registered Virginia voter from 6AM to 7PM and, as long as you’re in line by 7PM, you will be able to cast your ballot. 

Locate your polling place well-ahead of November 3rd to help ensure a smooth voting process on Election Day. 

What’s on Your Ballot?

Knowing what will be on your ballot will help you become a prepared and informed voter for the general election. Be sure to take some time to research the candidates and initiative’s that’ll be on your ballot this election.


 Voting While Trans

For transgender and non-binary individuals, we recognize that Virginia’s historically strict voter ID laws may have impeded your ability to cast your ballot in-person. However, having an ID that doesn’t match your gender identity or presentation should not affect your right to vote. Voting is a critical component of our democracy and every American, regardless of their gender identity or gender expression, has the right to participate in our election process.

During the 2020 General Assembly session, Virginia became one of 14 states to repeal their strict voter ID law. Now, Virginians do not have to present a photo ID in order to vote. For transgender and non-binary individuals, this means that you can present any acceptable document to prove your identity if you’re opting to vote in-person.

For more information on voting as a transgender or non-binary person, visit TransForm the Vote for handy resources in English and en español.


 KEY DATES

Mark your calendar and save these key dates for the 2020 General Election!