The March 20th primary is still a few weeks away, but early voting has already begun in Chicago.
Instead of having to worry about taking time off of work and having to be at a specific polling place, early voting allows you to vote at any polling place citywide on your own schedule.
Many people find it difficult to find the time to vote and especially in primaries and midterms. In the 2014 Illinois gubernatorial race, only 19% of eligible people voted.
If you are unsure if you are registered or just need to make an address update, find out what you need to do here. An address update will require two forms of ID, only one of which needs your current address.
Finding out who to vote for or even who is running can be a tricky process. Thankfully, the fine people at Ballot Ready have made the process as easy as possible.
All you have to do is enter your address and the specific party ballot and they give a list of every potential candidate running. You can even save preferred candidates to “your ballot” and look them up at the poll so you don’t have to remember every single position.
(Note: in primaries, you only have the option to vote for the party with which you are registered).
Some of the main positions for this election include Illinois Governor, Illinois Attorney General, Cook County Board President, and multiple Senate and House representatives, in both the Illinois and U.S. Congress.
For a more in depth look on candidates and their histories, there is also Ballotpedia.
On election day, you are required to vote at a specific polling place in your district. But with early voting, there are 51 options around the entire city where you can vote. Some polling places have extended hours during the week and all of them are open on the weekends.
Thru March 4th, the only location open is at the Loop Super Site at 16. W Adams. Starting March 5th, all polling locations will be open with the hours of:
- Mon., March 5 – Sat., March 10: 9 am-5 pm
- Sun., March 11: 10 am-4 pm
- Mon., March 12 – Fri., March 16: 9 am-7 pm
- Sat., March 17: 9 am-5 pm
- Sun., March 18: 10 am-4 pm
- Mon., March 19: 9 am-5 pm (On March 19, the six “permanent sites” will remain open thru 7 pm.)
A full list of locations can be found on the city’s early voting guide website.
If you have more questions about registration, where and how to vote, you can contact the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners.