MADISON COUNTY, ALABAMA, Ala. — Madison County election officials expect around 20,000 people to vote absentee in the 2020 general election. This means many people will be filling out an absentee ballot for the first time.
In Alabama, all ballots are counted the same way on election day; however, there are different ways to cast your ballot. You can do it in person or by mail.
If you're voting absentee, you must first request an absentee ballot.
Once you get the ballot in the mail, it will come with three envelopes. There will be one secrecy envelope, one with an affidavit printed on it, and one plain envelope that's been pre-addressed.
First, find the actual ballot and fill it all out. Make sure you color in the entire bubble next to the candidate you support.
After your ballot is filled out, seal it in the "secrecy" envelope. Put the "secrecy" envelope inside the affidavit envelope and seal it.
The next step is very important.
Complete the affidavit that is on the outside of the envelope. You must sign it and get it notarized, or instead of a notary, you can get two witnesses to sign it.
Madison County Circuit Clerk Debra Kizer said, "If they vote in person, we can take care of that for them. We'll notarize it for them, but if they are voting at home, they need two people 18 or over to be a witness for them, so it can be your husband, it can be your next door neighbor. It can be the mailman, and it doesn't have to be anybody that necessarily knows you personally."
You can return your ballot in person or mail it. If you're mailing it, put the affidavit envelope into the pre-addressed one and send it off.
Don't wait to return your absentee ballot.
The day before the election is the last day you can postmark your ballot, but it still has to make it all the way to the absentee office by noon on election day for your vote to count.
Click here for our full election guide.