What you need to know to register to vote by the Oct. 9 deadline

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As described by East Lansing City Clerk Jennifer Shuster, the voter registration process is simple and quick.

People looking to register to vote will need to either fill out a registration form or mail the form in to be processed, which in that case the form can be accessed online.

Registration forms can be found or mailed to any local or county clerk’s office, or any secretary of state office locations. In Ingham County, there are are multiple locations  to register. This list includes three Secretary of State office locations, the Lansing City Clerk’s office, and the two Ingham County Clerk’s locations. In East Lansing, the City Clerk is located at 410 Abbot Road. The Lansing city government has all locations listed on its website.

East Lansing City Clerk Shuster said that students should consider where they will be on election day when filling out their address on the form. 

Nov. 6 is when the midterm elections take place, and Oct. 9 is the deadline to register to vote.

The state of Michigan will see if their voter turnout during this midterm election year is higher than previous years. According to information provided by the Michigan government, the voter turnout percentage in 2014 reached its lowest point since 1990. In 1990 the voter turnout was at 38.6%, and there have been a total of six midterm elections since that year. The most recent year of 2014 saw 41.6%, with 213,720 people unregistered of the 7,660,000 voting age population.

Despite the voter turnout percentage drop in recent midterm elections, Shuster believes that this particular election is going to be different. “I definitely think there’s going to be a higher voter turnout,” said Shuster. “I think we’re expecting anywhere upwards to 50 percent turnout, even at our campus precincts.”

Lansing City Clerk Chris Swope said that there is a high number of citizens in Michigan registered, but that there is a “very high registration rate compared to the turnout rate.”

Both Shuster and Swope believe that voting is important for the upcoming election. Shuster said that a vote “does count,” which is something that some students have been skeptical about before, while Swope said that “getting out to vote is the way we impact” values being “reflected.”


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