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Maine Youth Voting Campaign

There’s a law in Maine…

 

Did you know that if you're 17, you might be eligible to VOTE?! Since 2006, Maine has had a law that was passed in the Maine Legislature allowing eligible 17-year-olds to vote for candidates (not ballot questions or bond issues) in the June primary elections if they will be 18 and otherwise eligible to vote by the general election in November of that year.  Eligible 17-year-olds can also participate in their party’s caucus now too!

What’s A Caucus?
What’s A Primary

Download this brochure to find out if want to know: (pdf & rtf)

  1. Am I eligible to vote?
  2. What is a primary election?
  3. How do I register to vote?
  4. Where to I go to vote?

Here's what the law says about primary elections:
Maine LD 640
2003-2004 Regular Session
Passed (2004 Me. Laws, Chap. 577)
Notwithstanding section 111, subsection 2, a person who has not yet reached 18 years of age but will be 18 years of age at the time of a general election and meets all other qualifications in order to vote in a primary election may vote in the primary election for the selection of candidates to be on the ballot at that general election. [2003, c. 577, §1 (new).]

 Read more about what the law has to say regarding caucuses!

 So how do I know if I’m eligible to vote in Maine?

  1. You must be 18 by the general election in November.
  2. You must be a U.S. citizen.
  3. You must be a resident of Maine and the town or city where you register.

I’m eligible to vote, but how do I vote in the primaries?

  1. You have to be registered to vote!
  2. You must enroll in a political party (and you can only vote in your party’s primary!)
  3. On your voter registration card, just check the box of the party you want to enroll in.  Then you can vote in that party’s primary!

An important note: Even if you do not want to enroll in a party or vote in the primaries, you CAN and SHOULD register to vote if you are seventeen or older!  (Your town office will hold your completed voter registration card until you turn eighteen.)

Questions? Want more info?

Contact the Maine Secretary of State's Office

Office of the Secretary of State
Division of Elections
101 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333-0101
(207) 624-7650
cec.elections@maine.gov


These great links have plenty more information about voter registration and elections:

Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools: Education for Democracy