Below are some tips on how to be an effective and knowledgeable voter without exhausting yourself. As many of you know, I’m a deputy voter registrar (which means I can register people to vote in Harris County) and I encourage everyone who is able to get out and vote early and often.*
Coming up we have a midterm election on November 6, 2018, and there are many important items on the ballot. A few that I’ve been thinking about:
- City of Houston Proposition B: pay parity between firefighters and police. For: firefighters get a much-needed raise of ~20% adding ~$100M in costs which will likely mean cuts in police, municipal, and fire. Against: firefighters only get a 9.5% raise. If you vote straight ticket you also need to vote separately for propositions.
- US Senate: Beto O’Rourke vs Ted Cruz.
- Harris County Juvenile District Courts: Judges Glenn Devlin(R-313) and John Phillips(R-314) send way more children to juvenile prisons than other judges.
- Harris County Judge: young Latina Lina Hidalgo is running against veteran Ed Emmett.
- The 19 Black women running for Harris County judicial seats. To my recollection, in the primaries every single Black woman who ran lost unless they were running against another Black woman.
- Sometimes I’m not a fan of voting straight ticket but for this election that works for my ballot.
*kidding. It’s illegal to vote more than once in an election. Please don’t get yourself arrested for voter fraud. That’s not a thing.
- Pull up your sample ballot from harrisvotes.com to print or write down names since you can’t bring your phone into the booth.
- You can vote at any location during early voting (see dates below) but NOT on election day: https://www.harrisvotes.com/Docs/EarlyVotingPDFMaps/EarlyVotingLocations.pdf.
- If you want directions to the nearest early voting location text “VOTE” to (832) 558-8306 to use the no-cost service TextToPolls created by student Nile Dixon.
- The League of Women Voters of the Houston Area Voters Guide is an excellent resource to do your own research http://lwvhouston.org/.
- If you doing your own research isn’t feasible the Houston GLBT Political Caucus endorsements are a great starting point: http://www.thecaucus.org/endorsements/
- Bring ID! Although if you don’t have it you can still vote. (Details here: https://www.harrisvotes.com/VotingInfo#IDs)
- If you received an “address confirmation” letter or if you moved you can still vote. And if your name isn’t on the list of registered voters you can request a provisional ballot. Details here.