Our View

Local voting turnout is usually in the single digits. Sometimes an interesting local race, say for mayor, may push that number in the low teens. Presidential elections often bring out voters in large numbers.

For example in Whitfield County, voter turnout for the 2020 general election was 67.34% as 36,870 of 54,749 eligible voters cast their ballots in the heated presidential election. Turnout for the 2016 general election, which featured Democrat Hillary Clinton vs. Republican Donald Trump for the presidency, was actually higher as a percentage at 77.9% but lower in the number of votes 30,362.

To play a role in who helps lead our community, state and country, you must register to vote. Not only is voting your civic duty, it determines your future at the local, state and national levels.

Requirements to register to vote are:

• Be a citizen of the United States.

• Be a legal resident of the county.

• Be at least 17 1/2 years of age to register and 18 years of age to vote.

• Not be serving a sentence for conviction of a felony involving moral turpitude.

• Have not been found mentally incompetent by a judge.

Now that you’ve determined if you are eligible to vote, Georgia residents have several ways to register, from in-person methods to online opportunities.

• Download, complete and mail a voter registration application from the Secretary of State’s Office at georgia.gov/register-vote.

• Go to your local county board of registrar’s office or election office, public library, public assistance office, recruitment office, schools and other government offices for a mail-in registration form.

• Registration is offered when you renew or apply for your driver’s license at Georgia Department of Driver Services.

• College students can obtain Georgia voter registration forms, or the necessary forms to register in any state in the U.S., from their school registrar’s office or from the office of the vice president of academic affairs.

The Georgia Secretary of State’s Office notes that voter registration is a county responsibility. Georgia counties issue precinct cards after reviewing and processing applications and asks that you allow your home county at least three to four weeks before contacting them.

React to this story:


Trending Video