The presidential primaries in Massachusetts will be held on Tuesday, March 1st. Here is some important information about voting in Massachusetts.
- How does the primary system work? Massachusetts has a “mixed” primary system, meaning party registrants must vote in their own party’s primary (i.e., registered Republicans will receive a Republican party ballot; registered Democrats will receive a Democratic party ballot). Unaffiliated (sometimes called “independent” or unenrolled) voters can vote in whichever party’s primary they choose. You can check your registration status and/or view a sample ballot here.
- When do I vote? All polling locations are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. By law, anyone who is in line when the polls close at 8:00 p.m. must be allowed to vote.
- Where do I vote? If you are registered to vote in Massachusetts, there are several ways to find your polling location. You may utilize the Massachusetts Secretary of State’s look-up tool. In addition, students on the Medford/Somerville campus may consult this list.
- How can I get ride to the polls? On the Medford/Somerville campus, a bipartisan group of students will be offering rides to the polls from 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., departing from the Campus Center (upper patio area). Please contact TuftsCIVIC@gmail.com or 646-546-6655 for more information.
- What should I bring to the polls? In Massachusetts, you may be asked to show identification (such as a driver’s license, a copy of a voter registration letter, a recent utility bill, or another document with your name and address) at the polls if you are voting for the first time in Massachusetts, you are an inactive voter, or for other reasons. You can access more information about acceptable forms of identification here.
- What if I have a problem voting? If you encounter a challenge at the polls, you may request a provisional ballot. According to the Massachusetts Secretary of State, “voters who find that they are not on the list where they believe they are registered to vote, or find that they are listed incorrectly, have the right to cast a provisional ballot.” Your provisional ballot will be sealed in an envelope and, if you are determined to be registered, it will be unsealed and counted. If a problem cannot be resolved at the poll location, you may contact the Elections Division at 1-800-462-VOTE.
- What if I am unable to vote on March 1st? Information about who is eligible to file an absentee ballot, and when/how one can be obtained, is available here.
- How can I update my registration information or receive voting reminders in the future? Tufts recently announced a new service for our entire University community: tufts.turbovote.org. Though the registration deadline for the March 1 Massachusetts primaries has passed, you may use TurboVote to sign up for text alerts with important voting reminders. If you choose to utilize the site, it allows you to register either in Massachusetts or, if you prefer, in your home state. You may also use TurboVote to update your voter registration information if, for example, you move to a new dorm or address on or off campus.