5 Questions about Voting in the Primary
What should I expect when I check in at the polls during the Joint Primary Election?
When you go to the polls during the primary elections, you will be asked which party’s primary you would like to participate in. You have two options. Choose Democratic (or Republican, but we’re all Democrats here!) Your ballot will ONLY show the Democratic races that you are eligible to vote in (no Republican races.) Parties other than the two major ones might have candidates on the ballot in the November general election, but they have their own processes to choose their candidates.
Should I bring my Voter Registration Certificate to the primary?
If you show your postcard-sized Voter Registration Certificate at the polls during the primary, it may be stamped with your party affiliation. If you attend a county or state Democratic convention, this certificate is proof that you voted in the Democratic primary. (Your name will also be on a list of all voters who participated in the Democratic primary statewide.)
Pro tip: bringing your unexpired Voter Registration Certificate to the polls is always a good idea. Although you cannot currently use it as a primary form of ID to vote, it proves that you are registered and eligible to vote, in case a question about your eligibility were to come up. It has your unique VUID number, which can be used to look you up in the database of registered voters. Bringing your Voter Registration Certificate to the polls can save you time.
How do primary runoff elections work?
Many of the Democratic races in central Texas have several candidates running in the primary. Since a candidate must receive more than 50% of the vote to advance to the general election in November, it is likely that some races will result in a runoff.
If you vote in the primary election, you must vote with the same party in the runoff election. No switching parties! There will be a record of which ballot you received in the joint primary election at the primary runoff election, and you will automatically get the ballot for that party again. You do not have to vote in the Joint Primary Election to vote in the runoff election. Mark your calendar: Primary Runoff Election Day is May 22.
How will my General Election ballot in November be different from my Joint Primary Election ballot in March?
In a general election in November, your ballot will reflect all the candidates from all parties in all the races you are eligible to vote in. (General elections also sometimes have tax propositions, state constitutional amendment questions, and other matters for voter consideration besides races for public office.)
How can I learn about the Democratic candidates in the Joint Primary Election?
All candidates have websites and a social media presence (like on Facebook and Twitter.) You can find out online about events where a candidate will appear, and go to those events to talk to the candidate and their supporters. (Our Primary Page has a list of those websites.)
Sometimes organizations hold candidate forums for specific races, where you can see all or most of the candidates at the same event. Some Democratic clubs have an endorsement process; you can check their websites and social media to find out what candidates they are supporting. The League of Women Voters Austin Area publishes a nonpartisan Voters Guide with questions they have asked of all candidates in every contested race. (This primary, you can find the Voters Guide at public library branches, or online at lwvaustin.org.)
Blue Action Democrats Member