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Hello Virginia.

If you want to vote, first you need to make sure you're registered. There's a link in the description where you can check your registration status right now.

If you aren't registered, or have moved since the last time you voted, you can register online using the link in the description as long as you have your social security number and a Virginia driver's license or state ID. If you don't have a Virginia license license – maybe you don't drive or you're a college student from another state – you'll go to the same registration website to fill out a form, but at the end, you have to print it out and mail it in. Whichever way you register, you have until October 15th if you want to vote in the November midterm election.

Great. So you're registered. Now you get to vote.

In most cases, you're going to be voting in person on November 6th, but you can vote absentee by mail if you will be out of state on election day – that includes if you are a student in another state but would prefer to vote in Virginia – or if you have an illness, disability, work shift, or religious belief that prevents you from going to the polls. If any of those apply to you, you can request a ballot using either the online or mail in form below. You can request your ballot any time between now and October 30th, but the sooner you get your request in, the longer you will have to look it over, research candidates, and vote before you send it in by November 6th.

If you qualify to vote absentee by mail, you can also go vote in person at your local registrar's office between September 21st and November 3rd. There's a link to find the early voting locations and hours for your county. For the rest of you, you can head to the polls on November 6th from 6am to 7pm and there's a link in the description you can use to find out where to go to vote.

You'll need to bring an ID with you, too. A Virginia Driver's license, state ID, passport, military or tribal ID, or student ID from a college or university in Virginia all work. You can also go to the same website you used to check your registration and voting location to find a sample ballot.

Your sample ballot tells you everything that you'll be able to vote for in the midterm election. You don't have to vote for every single thing on the ballot, but if you want a chance to do some research on the candidates in your local elections, it's a pretty good idea to look at a sample ballot first. You can even fill it out and bring it to the polls with you, so you can be sure you remember how you want to vote.

The best thing to do if you want to vote in the midterms is to make a plan to vote right now – from what day you're going to register to whether you going to vote in person or absentee. What kind of ID you're going to use, and where it is, even what time you're going to vote and how you're going to get there – Write it down, put it in your notes app, text it to your friend, just make a plan so that nothing unexpected stops you from being counted on November 6th. There will be links for everything you need to get registered and find your polling location in description.

Thank you for voting.