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Ranked Choice Voting
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Voting Rights
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General

What am I voting on this November?

On November 2nd, NYC will hold a general election for local offices including Mayor, Public Advocate, Comptroller, Borough President, City Council, and District Attorney.

Meet the candidates

What is a Primary Election?

It’s the election before the election. In primary elections, you decide which candidate will be your party’s nominee for the general election. You must be a member of a political party to vote in a primary.

Learn more about types of elections

What is a General Election?

General elections are the championship match, where candidates from different parties compete to win elected office. Winners of primary elections represent their party in the general election. General elections sometimes include ballot proposals, where voters choose whether to adopt new laws or policies.

Learn more about types of elections

What is a Special Election?

Special elections are held when an elected official leaves office before the end of their term. The winner serves in office until the end of that term.

Learn more about types of elections

Where can I find information about the candidates who will be on the ballot?

Right here! To learn more about the candidates on your ballot, just click on “Meet the Candidates” in the navigation up top. You can enter in your address to find which offices will be on your ballot, and a list of candidates running for each office. You can also find profiles submitted by candidates, including videos and more.

Meet the candidates

Can I vote in the November election?

Yes, as long as you are registered to vote! This is a general election that is open to all registered voters. The deadline to register is October 8.

Learn more about general elections

Register to vote

Ranked Choice Voting

What is Ranked Choice Voting?

In primary and special elections for local offices, you can rank up to 5 candidates in order of preference instead of choosing just one.

Learn more about Ranked Choice Voting

How does Ranked Choice Voting work?

You can rank up to five candidates in order of preference, instead of choosing just one. If a candidate receives more than 50% of 1st-choice votes, they are the winner. If no candidate earns more than 50% of 1st-choice votes, then counting will continue in rounds. At the end of each round, the candidate with the fewest votes will be eliminated. If you ranked that candidate 1st, your vote will go to the next highest ranked candidate on your ballot. This process will continue until there are two candidates left. The candidate with the most votes wins.

Learn more about Ranked Choice Voting

Can I still vote for just one candidate?

Yes! You can still vote for just your 1st- choice candidate. However, ranking other candidates does not harm your 1st choice. If your 1st and only choice is eliminated, your vote will have no influence on the outcome of the election. (You may hear folks call this an “exhausted ballot.”)

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

Do I have to rank a total of 5 candidates?

No. You can rank up to five candidates, but you do not need to rank a total of 5.

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

Can I rank my favorite candidate more than once?

No. If you rank your preferred candidate more than once (for example as your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th choice), then only your first ranking will count. There is no strategic benefit to giving the same candidate multiple rankings. It doesn’t help them, and it takes away your chance to have a say about who you’d choose next out of the remaining candidates (This is another way your ballot can get “exhausted”).

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

Can I rank multiple candidates as my first choice?

No. You can only choose one candidate for each ranking. If you choose more than one candidate as your 1st choice, your ballot will not be valid.

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

How do I vote for a write-in candidate with Ranked Choice Voting?

To vote for a candidate whose name is not on the ballot, write their name on the “Write-in” line and fill in an oval to rank your write-in choice.

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

Does ranking 5 candidates mean I have 5 votes?

No. Your vote only counts for the highest active candidate on your ballot. Your vote will only count for your 2nd choice if your 1st choice is eliminated, and so on.

Learn how votes are counted with Ranked Choice Voting

Will the voting machine tell me if I make a mistake on my ballot?

If you vote in person, the voting machine will let you know if you give multiple candidates the same ranking. If you make a mistake, you can ask a poll worker for a new ballot. However, the voting machine will not let you know if you skip rankings or rank the same candidate multiple times, since your top-choice vote will still count in those cases.

Learn how to fill out your Ranked Choice ballot

When can I expect results in Ranked Choice Voting elections?

Final results in Ranked Choice elections will not be known until all absentee and military ballots are counted, which could take several weeks after Election Day.

Learn how votes are counted with Ranked Choice Voting

Where can I find official election results?

The NYC Board of Elections will share unofficial election results after polls close on Election Day. However, these results will not include any absentee ballot votes. After they receive all absentee ballots, they will finish counting and release certified final results. You can find election results at the NYC Board of Elections website.

Visit the Board of Elections website

Vote by Mail

Can I still vote in person if I request or submit an absentee ballot?

Yes! If you vote in person after requesting or submitting an absentee ballot, your absentee ballot is automatically disqualified. Only your in person vote will count. You can either vote early or on Election Day. You do not need to bring your ballot with you.

Learn more about voting by mail

Can I drop off my absentee ballot at my poll site?

Yes! You can drop off your completed absentee ballot at any NYC poll site. Ballot boxes will be available at the front desk. You can also drop off your ballot at any Board of Elections office. You do not need postage if you are dropping off your ballot.

Learn more about voting by mail

Can I track my absentee ballot after I return it?

Yes! The Board of Elections’ ballot tracker will let you know the status of your ballot after you submit a request. It will also let you know if they have received your completed ballot and whether it’s valid.

Track your ballot

Can I fix my absentee ballot if I made a mistake?

The Board of Elections is required by law to notify you if there is a curable error on your ballot envelope, such as a missing or incorrect signature. If there is a fixable error on your ballot, they will contact you by mail, email, and phone (if available) within 1 day of discovering the error. You will then have up to 7 days to correct the error by returning a signed affirmation.

Learn more about voting by mail

Can I vote absentee in person?

Sounds strange, but it’s true! You can vote absentee in person at your borough’s Board of Elections office. Offices are open 9am-5pm Monday through Friday, and on the weekend prior to Election Day. This can be a helpful option if you miss the deadline to request a ballot online or by mail. On Election Day offices are open until 9pm.

Find your local Board of Elections office

Can I join a permanent absentee ballot list?

Yes! If you are permanently ill or disabled and cannot get to your poll site, you can join the Board of Elections permanent absentee ballot list. To join, check the box marked “permanent illness or physical disability” on the absentee ballot application. The Board of Elections will automatically send you an absentee ballot application for every election you are qualified to vote in. 

Request absentee ballotDownload absentee ballot request form

What happens if the Board of Elections doesn’t receive my ballot by Election Day?

The Board of Elections can receive ballots up to seven days after Election Day. However, you must postmark by November 2nd for your ballot to be valid.

Learn more about voting by mail

Early Voting

Where do I vote during early voting?

You must vote at your assigned early voting site. Your early voting site may be different from your Election Day poll site, so make sure to check before you go!

Find your poll site

When are polls open for early voting?

You can vote early in person from October 23 - October 31. Early voting dates & hours:

Saturday, October 23

 

Sunday, October 24

 

Monday, October 25

 

Tuesday, October 26

 

Wednesday, October 27

 

Thursday, October 28

 

Friday, October 29

 

Saturday, October 30

 

Sunday, October 31  

 

Find your poll site

Can I vote early if I requested or submitted an absentee ballot?

Yes! If you vote in person after requesting or submitting an absentee ballot, your absentee ballot is automatically disqualified. Only your in person vote will count. You do not need to bring your absentee ballot to your poll site.

If I’m in line at my poll site when polls close, can I still vote?

Yes! You have the right to vote as long as you are a registered voter in line by the time polls close.

What are the benefits of early voting?

Early voting gives voters more flexibility, reduces wait times on Election Day, and eases the burden on poll workers, creating a more pleasant voting experience for everyone!

Why do we have early voting?

Early voting was signed into law by the Governor in 2019. It had bipartisan support in the State Senate and Assembly.

Election Day

Where do I vote on Election Day?

You must vote at your assigned poll site on Election Day.

Find your poll site

When are polls open on Election Day?

Polls are open from 6am-9pm on Election Day.

Find your poll site

Can I vote early before Election Day?

Yes! You can vote early in person from October 23 - October 31. You can also vote by mail by requesting an absentee ballot.

Saturday, October 23

 

Sunday, October 24

 

Monday, October 25

 

Tuesday, October 26

 

Wednesday, October 27

 

Thursday, October 28

 

Friday, October 29

 

Saturday, October 30

 

Sunday, October 31  

 

Learn about more ways to vote

Can I vote on Election Day if I requested or submitted an absentee ballot?

Yes! If you vote in person after requesting or submitting an absentee ballot, your absentee ballot is automatically disqualified. Only your in person vote will count. You do not need to bring your absentee ballot to your poll site.

Learn more about Election Day

If I’m in line at my poll site when polls close, can I still vote?

Yes! You have the right to vote as long as you are a registered voter in line by 9pm on Election Day.

Learn more about Election Day

Will I know who won on Election Day?

Maybe, but don’t be surprised if we have to wait a few weeks. The Board of Elections can receive absentee ballots until seven days after Election Day, so the results of some races may not be known until all ballots have been received.

Registering to Vote

Am I eligible to vote?

You are eligible to register to vote if you are:

  • a U.S. citizen
  • a New York City resident for at least 30 days
  • at least 16 years old (you can pre-register to vote at 16 or 17, but you must be 18 to vote)

Learn more about registering to vote

How do I register to vote?

If you have a New York State ID, you can register online with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Register to vote online

If you do not have a New York State ID, you can complete a voter registration form and mail it to the Board of Elections. You can also visit your Borough Board of Elections office to register in person.

Download a voter registration form

If you don’t have a New York State ID or a printer, you can digitally fill out a form with TurboVote and have them print and mail it to you, so you can sign and return to the Board of Elections. The platform also works on mobile, so you don’t even need a computer.

Register to vote with TurboVote

How can I check if I’m registered to vote?

You can check your voter registration status, which political party you are enrolled in, and your political district information by using the NYS Voter Lookup tool.

Check your registration

Do I need to update my voter registration if I move?

Yes! When you move, you should change your address with the Board of Elections by submitting a new voter registration form. Complete the section labeled “Voting information that has changed” by entering your old address. If you would like to become a member of a political party, or remain a member of your current political party, make sure to select your political party on your registration. In order to vote in the November 2 election, your change of address must be received by the Board of Elections by October 13.

Learn more about registering to vote

Do I have to join a political party when I register?

No. You do not have to join a political party when you register to vote. However, only members of political parties are eligible to vote in primary elections. So if you’d like to vote in primary elections for a particular party, you should join that party when you register.

Learn more about primary elections

Can I change my party affiliation after I register to vote?

Yes! To update your party affiliation, you must submit a new voter registration form. On your form, make sure to select the political party that you would like to join.

Learn more about registering to vote

Can I register to vote if I have a felony conviction?

If you are currently on probation or parole, you have the right to vote.

Voting Rights

What are my rights while voting?

At your poll site you have the right to:

  • Ask a poll worker for help
  • Use an interpreter if you need language assistance
  • Bring any voting materials with you 
  • Vote even if the voting machine is broken
  • Vote by affidavit ballot if your name is missing from the list of voters at your polling site
  • Not show an ID if you are not a first time voter

Learn more about your voting rights

Do I have a right to take time off work to vote?

Yes! You have the right to take two paid hours off from work at the beginning or end of your shift if polls are open for less than 4 hours before your shift starts and after it ends. That means on Election Day, you can take paid time off if you are scheduled to start work before 10am and end work after 5pm. You must notify your employer at least two days before you plan to vote.

Learn more about your voting rights

Who should I call if there’s an issue at my poll site?

You can call the NYC Board of Elections about any issues at your poll site. Call 1-866-Vote-NYC (1-866-868-3692).

TTY-212-487-5496

Who can I contact if my rights, or someone else’s, are being violated?

You can contact the Election Protection hotline to speak with a trained Election Protection volunteer and get free legal support. Call 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683).

Can I vote if I was formerly incarcerated?

If you are currently on probation or parole, you have the right to vote.

Can I vote if I’m experiencing homelessness?

Yes! If you are experiencing homelessness, you can register and vote in New York City. You must include a mailing address where the BOE can send you notices on your registration form.

Accessibility

What support is available if I need filling out my ballot?

Ballot Marking Devices are available at all poll sites to help voters fill out their ballots during early voting and on Election Day. These devices can be helpful to voters who are blind, visually impaired, or have a disability or condition that make it difficult or impossible to mark a ballot with a pen. However, any voter can request to use a Ballot Marking Device.

You can use a Ballot Marking Device to see your ballot on a display screen, listen to your choices through headphones, or translate your ballot into additional languages. If you’d like to use a Ballot Marking Device, just ask a poll worker! 

The device provides four ways to mark your ballot:

  • Touch screen
  • Sip & puff device
  • Keypad (Braille)
  • Rocker paddle

Learn more about Ballot Marking Devices from the Board of Elections

Can I bring someone to help me vote?

Yes! As long as they are not your employer or union representative, you can bring someone to help you vote. You can also always ask a poll worker for help.

Learn more about accessibility

Can I request an accessible absentee ballot?

Yes! If you are visually impaired or have a disability that requires you to use an accessible version of the absentee ballot that can be read by a screen reader and marked digitally, you may request an accessible ballot from the NYC Board of Elections.

Request an accessible absentee ballot

Are poll sites accessible?

Yes! The NYC Board of Elections ensures that every poll site in the city is accessible to all voters during early voting and Election Day. If there are any issues with your poll site, you can contact the Board of Elections at 1-866-Vote-NYC (212-487-5496).

Can I bring a translator to help me vote at my poll site?

Yes, as long as they are not also your employer or union representative. Some poll sites have materials in Spanish, Chinese, Korean, and Bengali. The languages available at your poll site are based on local Census data.

 

In addition, interpreters are available at some poll sites to provide assistance in these languages and others, such as Arabic, Haitian Creole, Russian, and Yiddish. You can learn which poll sites offer translators in each language at the Civic Engagement Commission’s website.

Learn more about your rights as a voter

Can I vote on a ballot in a language other than English?

It depends on where you live. By law, New York City ballots and other voting materials are translated into Bengali, Chinese, Korean, and Spanish at certain poll sites based on local Census data.

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Key Dates

  • Voter Registration Deadline

    Fri, October 8, 2021
  • Early Voting

    Sat, October 23, 2021 - Sun, October 31, 2021
  • Absentee ballot request deadline

    Tue, October 26, 2021
  • General Election Day

    Tue, November 2, 2021