The 2016 Presidential Election is fast approaching – with the U.S. General Election voting scheduled for Tuesday, November 8, 2016. If you have not registered to vote by absentee ballot, now is the time to do it – particularly if you are stationed overseas.
Military members and their dependents are eligible to vote in the general election. There are two easy ways to do this: visit your unit or installation voting assistance officer, or go to the Federal Assistance Voting Program home page.
You can also find the Federal Assistance Voting Program home page online on a special mobile website found at: http://www.fvap.gov/mobile/ Users who visit the site from a mobile browser should automatically be redirected to the mobile version. The mobile browser makes it easy to go through the registration process with just a few clicks, and find the latest news alerts, absentee voting information, State election dates, key contact information, and answers to Frequently Asked Questions.
Make Your Vote Count!
To register and request an absentee ballot, simply fill out the Voter Registration/Ballot request Form (Federal Post Card Application, FPCA, SF 76) and mail it to your local election office. After your registration has been approved, your local Election Official will mail your ballot. Complete the absentee ballot and return it to your Election Official and your vote will be counted.
You can also obtain a Voter registration/Ballot Request Form from the nearest US Consulate or Embassy, or the Voters Assistance Office if your base has one. Most units are also assigned a Unit Voting Assistance Officer who should be able to assist you with this information.
Presidential Election Voting Deadlines
U.S. General Election Voting Deadlines: While the majority of US Citizens on the US Mainland will vote on November 8th, absentee ballots need to be sent in earlier in order to be processed and to have your vote count. The majority of need to be mailed in by the last week of October, but it depends on your location.
The FVAP has a schedule of mailing cutoff dates for the 2016 General Election (pdf). Most of the APO and FPO locations have a recommended mailing cutoff date in late October. Remember, you can send in your vote earlier than these dates. So it’s best to act immediately if you are serving overseas.
Sending Your Ballot
Mail your ballot via US mail or another mail service. If mailing from outside the U.S., ensure there is proper postage if using a foreign mail service. As always, you can contact your election office to ensure they received your information by sending them an email or giving them a call!
Track Your Ballot. The Military Postal Service Agency (MPSA) provides free expedited ballot delivery and ballot tracking for overseas military members. They will place the Label 11- DOD on your ballot envelope, which allows you to track your ballot en route to your election office at www.usps.com.
Key absentee voter information:
- Forms Available for Download.
- Locate a Voting Office Near You.
- Where to Send Forms.
- More Information on Absentee Voting.
For more information: If you’d like more information on the Federal Voting Assistance Program or need help with the absentee voting process please visit FVAP.gov for live chat assistance, call FVAP at 1-800-438-VOTE or DSN 425-1584 (CONUS)/312-425-1584 (OCONUS), or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be sure to vote this year!
Voting is Patriotic image credit: farlane