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How to vote in Nevada’s primary election

Updated June 13, 2022 - 2:48 pm

Early voting has ended, but that’s just one of the ways you can participate in Nevada’s primary election. Here are some common questions and answers about the election and how to vote.

Am I registered to vote?

You can check your registration or make changes to it on the Clark County Elections Department website. You will need to provide your full name (as it appears on your voter registration form) and the last four digits of your Social Security number or your driver’s license.

What if I’m not registered yet? When is the deadline?

You can register online at the Nevada secretary of state’s website if you already have a Nevada driver’s license or identification card. You can also register in person at any city clerk’s office, the DMV or the Clark County Elections Department. If you don’t have a license or state ID card, you can mail in a voter registration application to the state or county. More information about registration is available online.

Also, you can register to vote up to and including Election Day. But if you register after June 1, you can’t vote by mail and must vote in person. In that case, you will be allowed to vote using a provisional ballot, which will be counted only after officials verify your eligibility to vote.

How do I know who’s running in my area?

If you’re an active registered voter, the Clark County Elections Department should have sent you a sample ballot that includes the races in which you’re eligible to vote. If you didn’t get a sample ballot, you can see the races for your area by using the same link you would use to check your voter registration.

Where can I find out more information about the candidates?

The Review-Journal has written stories on almost all of the races on the primary ballot, and you can find those stories on our website. Also, we’ve asked all the candidates running for office to submit information about their campaigns and answer some basic questions. You can see that information online as well.

How do I vote in the election?

There are three ways to vote in the primary. First, there’s mail-in voting. All active registered voters should receive a mail ballot by the end of the month. (If you didn’t get one, you can contact the Elections Department at 702-455-VOTE (8683) or by emailing MailBallotRequest@ClarkCountyNV.gov.)

If you would rather not use a mail ballot, you can vote in person during early voting, at any number of sites around the valley. A complete list is included in all sample ballots but can also be found online. The county also has an app that will find the closest early voting center to you. You can vote at any voting center in the county, no matter where you live in the valley.

Finally, if you’re a traditionalist, you can vote in person on election day at any voting center. A list of those centers is below and online at the Clark County Elections website as well.

Voting Locations by Las Vegas Review-Journal on Scribd

How do I vote using a mail ballot?

You will receive your mail ballot, a secrecy sleeve and a return envelope in your packet. To vote, simply follow the instructions and mark the appropriate box next to your choice for a given office. You don’t have to vote in every race; the votes you do cast will still count, even if it’s only one race. When you’re finished making your selections, place your completed ballot into the secrecy sleeve, and then place that into the return envelope. Then, sign in the space provided on the outside of the envelope. (Those signatures will be matched to the signature you have on file with the Elections Department to prevent fraud.) If your envelope is not signed, your vote will be set aside and not counted. If your signature doesn’t match after being checked by a machine and an elections worker trained in signature verification, it will be set aside and you will be contacted to ensure the ballot is legitimate.

Don’t put more than one ballot in a return envelope. Multiple ballots sent in a single envelope will not be counted.

You can mail your ballot at any time up to and including primary election day, but officials recommend you send it in as soon as possible. Only ballots postmarked on or before election day will be counted, and all ballots must be received by the county no later than the fourth day after the election, in this case June 18. Mailing your ballot in early ensures your vote will be counted.

Also, if you decide to use a mail ballot, you can drop it off at any voting center, as well as at the city halls of Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, North Las Vegas and Mesquite, or the county’s Elections Department office at 965 Trade Drive in North Las Vegas. Remember, whether you mail in your ballot or drop it off, you must sign the outside of the envelope.

How do I know my mail ballot was received and accepted?

You can track your ballot through the mail all the way to the election center, using the ballottrax website.

How do I vote in person, either during early voting or on election day?

Once you arrive at a voting center, you’ll be asked for your name so elections workers can verify your voting precinct. You’ll sign in on an electronic tablet and be handed a card to activate the voting machine. Insert the card into the machine as shown, and your ballot will appear. (You can use the touch screen to change the contrast, select English, Spanish or Tagalog ballots, and to make the text larger or smaller.)

To vote, select the box next to the name of your preferred candidate. If you change your mind, touch the same spot, and the ballot will reset to allow you to make a different choice. At the bottom, you’ll see a “next” button that will allow you to move through several screens for the races in which you’re eligible to vote. You can also navigate “back” to previous screens if you so desire. When you’re finished, you will see a review screen that displays all of your choices.

At that point, you’ll be asked to print your ballot, and a scroll of paper will be displayed in a small printer next to the machine, with a QR code on it. Check to ensure the paper record matches your choices, and if it does, press the button marked “cast ballot” on the screen. The vote then will be recorded on the machine and on a drive that will be taken to elections headquarters to be counted. None of the voting machines is connected to the internet to prevent tampering.

If you choose to vote in person, bring your mail ballot with you to the polls. Elections workers will stamp it “surrendered.” If you don’t have it, you’ll be asked to sign a statement that you will not vote twice in the election (once in person and once by mail), which is a felony.

Why don’t I see all the races on my ballot?

Nevada is a closed primary state, which means only Republicans can vote for candidates in the GOP primary, and only Democrats can vote for candidates in their primary. Nonpartisan voters can only vote on a handful of nonpartisan races in the primary, such as sheriff or city council contests.

In the general election, all voters will be able to vote in all races.

Why don’t I see my usual member of Congress or state lawmaker on my ballot anymore?

The Nevada Legislature drew new district boundaries as required by law after the 2020 census, so your home may have been placed in a new district with different lawmakers than you had two years ago. Your sample ballot will list your congressional district, state lawmakers, county commission district and city wards.

What if I have other questions?

You can find answers to many more questions online at the Clark County Elections Department website or the Nevada secretary of state’s website.

Contact Steve Sebelius at SSebelius@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-0253. Follow @SteveSebelius on Twitter.

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