Your vote matters

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Election Day is coming soon, on May 7.  Early voting for Marion County is open now – and we all need to do our civic duty and vote.

In 2019, Marion County became a vote center county, meaning you can vote at any location in Marion County, regardless of where you live. There are 186 locations open on election day, and 9 early vote locations throughout the county. If you’re not able to vote in person, you may be eligible to vote by mail.

In the last presidential primary in 2020, voter turnout in Marion County was 22%. While the pandemic certainly impacted this low number, Marion County’s voter turnout often falls below national averages. This must change.

Why is it so important to vote in this election, or any election?

Throughout history, Black voter participation has constantly been under attack. It’s only been 59 years since the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Before, Black voters were legally barred from voting, or  singled out for poll taxes or poll tests, like accurately counting the number of jelly beans in a jar, just to get their ballot.

We’ve made enormous progress in the last 60 years, but Black voter suppression and voter suppression for all communities of color is still a problem. In Alabama, partisan lawmakers drew a congressional map the Supreme Court later ruled violated the Voting Rights Act and discriminated against Black voters.

In Indiana, a new law passed by the Indiana Statehouse, HB 1264, adds another hurdle for voters by requiring voting officials to verify citizenship by comparing the statewide voter registration system with the BMV list of temporary credentials given to noncitizens. If there is a discrepancy, the person must show proof of citizenship within 30 days. But this policy is destined for errors, imposing unreasonable bureaucratic hurdles for voters and causing them to lose their voter registration status.

In Congress, I’ll always fight to protect your right to vote. I was a proud champion of the For the People Act, which addresses voter access, election integrity, campaign finance, and ethics for all three branches of government. I also support the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would modernize and revitalize the Voting Rights Act of 1965. John Lewis was a good friend of mine, and this bill honors his legacy in a way he would have wanted – continuing the fight for civil rights Congressman Lewis dedicated his life to.

The best way we can honor Congressman Lewis’ legacy and the legacy of many who came before us is by exercising the most basic and yet most fundamental right of all: the right to vote.

No matter your party, no matter your beliefs, we must make our voices heard. Your vote matters. In the 2023 election in Indianapolis, races were decided by as little as 11 votes. We also make a difference by talking to our family members, friends, and neighbors and encouraging them to vote.

Visit vote.indy.gov for a full list of early voting times and locations as well as election day locations. Here’s what you need to know:

What do I need to bring?

Indiana state law requires a voter to present a government-issued photo ID when casting a ballot on Election Day. Proof of identification must meet all four of the following requirements:

  1. Contain a photo
  2. Show voter’s name, which must “reasonably conform” to the name in the voter registry
  3. Include an expiration date, which can be current or have expired after the date of the last general election, November 7, 2023
  4. Be government issued by the state of Indiana or the federal government

Where and when can I vote?

You can vote at any location in Marion County on Election Day, Tuesday, May 7 from 6am – 6pm. Early voting is open NOW at the City-County Building, plus 8 more early vote locations will open on April 27. For a full list of updated times and locations, visit vote.indy.gov.

Voters who meet certain conditions can vote by mail by applying for an absentee-by-mail ballot. You must submit an application by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, April 25. For more information visit vote.indy.gov. 

How do I register to vote or find out if I’m already registered?

The deadline has passed to register to vote for the May primary, but there’s still time to register for the November election! Visit Indianavoters.in.gov to register or check your registration status.