How WTAMU students can register to vote

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Mitchell Downing

One of Randall County's 2020 polling sites is located at Randall County District Court on 2309 Russell Long Blvd.

With the 2020 presidential election rapidly approaching, time to register to vote is running out. The deadline to register varies by the voting method and by state. Voters will be given the option to submit their ballot in person or by mail. Although voter registration is still open in all 50 states, some deadlines will be met faster than others. The deadline for Texas voter registration is Oct. 5, 2020. Early voting is open from Oct. 13 through Oct. 30. Election Day is set for Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020.
The Randall County Justice Center is one of 13 Randall County polling sites. This site will be accessible to WTAMU students and will open on Oct. 13 for early voting. A map of the other 12 locations can be found on Randall County’s website.
“Casting your first ballot in a presidential election year is very exciting. It is very important that eligible citizens participate in our democracy in the United States by voting. It protects democracy and it allows you to make your voice heard. It is important to establish a habit of voting and voting while you are in college is the place to start developing that habit,” said Claudia Stravato, WTAMU political science professor and Voter Services board member of The Amarillo League of Women Voters.
The League of Women Voters will be on campus every Tuesday in September helping students register to vote. “The League will have Voter Registration Deputies present who can assist with completing the voter registration cards and will take those cards to the appropriate county voter administrator,” Stravato said. They will be set up outside of the Jack B. Kelley Student Center.
In Texas, students may vote in the county of which they are attending university. This is a good option for students who may be unable to return to their hometowns to vote. To be eligible to vote in Randall County students must register at their campus address.
“Texas law allows college students to vote in the county where they are residing to attend college. This is important and was not always true. Since students cannot go back to their hometowns on Election Day, the law now allows them to exercise their right to vote in a more convenient way. If you are registered in your hometown and want to vote in Canyon, you must complete another voter registration card and mark ‘change of address,’” Stravato said.
Students will also have the option to vote absentee and mail-in their election ballot. Stravato explained that it is important that students get in contact with the Election Administrator in their home county and ask that they mail you an absentee ballot.
For more information on how to register and registration deadlines, students can also visit https://www.vote.org/.

 

*A link to Randall County’s website was added to this story on Sep. 11 to clarify other polling place options.