The State Election Board offers these tips and reminders to Oklahoma voters before they head to the polls for Oklahoma's General Election on Tuesday, November 6, 2012
- Be Prepared—Study the candidates and issues before going to the polls. Print the text of the State Questions at http://elections.ok.gov. Get a free sample ballot at your County Election Board. Often, your local newspaper also prints sample ballots.
- Bring Your ID—Oklahoma law requires every voter who votes in person at the precinct polling place or during early voting at the County Election Board to show proof of identity before receiving a ballot. There are three ways for voters to prove their identity under the law (only one proof of identity is required): 1. Show a valid (unexpired), government-issued photo identification; or 2. Show the free voter identification card issued to every voter by their County Election Board; or 3. Sign an affidavit and vote a provisional ballot. (If the information on your affidavit matches official voter registration records, your ballot will be counted after Election Day.)
- Know Your Polling Place—Thousands of voters were assigned to new polling places in 2011 following legislative and congressional redistricting. If you’re not sure where to vote, you can find your polling place location (and print a map) using the Polling Place Locator on the State Election Board’s website: http://elections.ok.gov. Or, call your County Election Board for personal assistance.
- Election Day Voting—Polls are open statewide from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Election Day. Lines at the polls are longest before work, during the lunch hour, and after work.
- Vote During Off-Peak Hours—Voters can save time by voting during “off-peak” hours – usually from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Bring Notes—Voting will go faster if you make personal notes about how you plan to vote – and take those notes with you to the polls. (Remember: you can only use these notes yourself. It is against the law to share your notes with other voters.)
- Enough Time—Give yourself plenty of time to vote on Election Day, and plan for long lines if voter turnout is heavy – especially in heavily populated areas and during peak voting hours before work, during the lunch hour, and after work.
- Inserting Your Ballot into the Scanner—When you are finished marking your ballot, please wait until the ballot scanner (voting machine) finishes processing the ballot of the voter ahead of you. The scanner is finished when the blue Oklahoma flag changes to a white screen that says “Ready to Scan.” Only then insert your ballot.
- Enjoy Yourself—Voting is both a right and a civic responsibility. Take joy in knowing that, by voting, you are making your voice heard in our representative Republic.
Answers to common election-related questions, can be found online at the State Election Board’s website.