We’re now well into primary season and the race is coming to North Carolina early next week on Tuesday, March 15th. We all know this is a busy time of year, but luckily Duke has an on-campus early voting location. Once you register to vote in North Carolina you can vote at the Freeman Center any time before Saturday – meaning you really have no excuse to not vote.
Where: Voting will happen at the Freeman Center (corner of Campus Drive and Swift Ave with the 4-way stop sign).
When: You can show up from Monday-Friday between 9am and 7pm, and from 9am to 1pm on Saturday. The last day of early voting on campus is Saturday March 12th.
ID: As of right now you need to show acceptable forms of ID to vote in North Carolina. Acceptable forms of ID are: A NC Driver’s License; an ID card from the NC DMV; a US Passport; an out of state Driver’s license which will only be accepted if you registered to vote in NC less than 90 days ago.
If you don’t have one of these you can get a free voter ID at the DMV if you’re already a registered voter. At the DMV you’ll have to show a valid photo ID (passport, any driver’s license, birth certificate) and a proof of residency like utility or housing bills or a vehicle registration certificate.
Registration: Currently you can’t register on the day of the actual primary on March 15th. However, you can register during the early voting period, which is right now. To register you have to be a US Citizen who has lived in Durham county (which includes Duke campus) for at least 30 days. To register and vote show up to the Freeman Center between now and Saturday with an acceptable form of ID. You can register and vote on the spot. If you think you registered but can’t remember for sure, look yourself up at this link.
Party Affiliation: When you register in North Carolina you have to pick a political party, or list yourself as Unaffiliated. During a primary this means that you’ll receive the ballot of your party. If you’re unaffiliated you’ll have to choose a ballot when you go to vote.
With early voting and same-day registration, as long as you have a valid ID voting in this primary is as easy as it could possibly be. No candidate has a definitive lead in either major party, so every vote counts, and the results are important.
The winner of the Presidential primary could help decide what taxes you pay, what kind of healthcare you have access to, and the role of our country abroad. State officials are also up for election, and if you live in North Carolina these are the people who write your tax and education laws. Even if you don’t feel like these elections affect you, they do affect people who live on your campus and in your community. Before early voting ends make the trip to the Freeman Center and voice your opinion – If you really need convincing I hear the mac ‘n cheese at Freeman is bomb.