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With the 2022 elections just around the corner, many citizens are wondering what documents are necessary in order to vote in the United States.
Other questions that arise around the elections are who can vote, what voter ID laws are, and how many states enforce them.
Since most of this information varies greatly from one state to the next, we will break it down and link to helpful resources throughout this guide to give our readers clear answers.
The 2022 United States elections will take place on November 8, 2022. This is a midterm election year, in which all 435 seats in the House of Representatives will be up for election. In addition, 34 of the 100 Senate seats will also be contested, and special elections may be held in order to fill vacancies within two other senate classes.
There will also be 39 other gubernatorial territorial and state elections as well as 34 attorney general elections, 27 secretary of state elections, and the vast majority of states will hold legislative elections. The table below lists some of the most notable elections going ahead this year.
|General Election Date||State||Type of Election|
|8/11/2022||All states||House of Representatives|
|8/11/2022||Arkansas||Mayoral (Fort Smith)|
|8/11/2022||Arkansas||Mayoral (Little Rock)|
|8/11/2022||California||Class 3 Senate Special Election|
|8/11/2022||California||Mayoral (San Bernardino)|
|8/11/2022||District of Columbia||Gubernatorial|
|8/11/2022||District of Columbia||Mayoral (Washington)|
|8/11/2022||Illinois||Cook County Election|
|8/11/2022||New Hampshire||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||New Jersey||Mayoral (Newark)|
|8/11/2022||New Jersey||Mayoral (Clifton)|
|8/11/2022||New York||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||North Carolina||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||North Carolina||Mayoral (Charlotte)|
|8/11/2022||North Dakota||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||Northern Mariana Islands||Gubernatorial|
|8/11/2022||Oklahoma||Mayoral (Oklahoma City)|
|8/11/2022||South Carolina||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||South Dakota||State Senate|
|8/11/2022||U.S. Virgin Islands||Gubernatorial|
|8/11/2022||Virginia||Mayoral (Newport News)|
All citizens who comply with the following voting requirements may exercise their right to vote in the United States. The common voting requirements, valid to every US state, are:
Voting requirements in the US are different in every state. Nevertheless, there are basic qualifications every US voter must meet in order to exercise their right to vote in local, state or federal elections.
As mentioned above, voter identification requirements vary from one US state to the next. While a few of them require no documentation at all, most states require government-issued photo IDs.
Alaska, Colorado, and West Virginia allow citizens to vote by presenting a certified copy of their US Birth Certificate.
The following table lists the Photo ID and Non-Photo ID for each US state.
|Photo ID||Non-Photo ID|
|Rhode Island||New Hampshire|
As of September 2016, 33 states had enacted some form of voter ID requirement.
If you are wondering what voter ID laws are about and how they discriminate against voters, it would be interesting to look over the case of Texas. Texas’ 2011 voter ID law and why it was rejected by the US Justice Department of Justice is quite an illustrating example.
This law required Texas voters to produce valid photo IDs in order to vote. The problem is that 18 percent of registered voters throughout the state of Texas apparently lack state government-issued photo IDs that adequately match their voter registration cards.
Name and address mismatch is also a problem in this situation. Hundreds of voters either have the same first and last name within the same county, or have changed names (due to marriage, divorce or adoption), registered to vote with a nickname or new home address.
Additionally, one-third of said voters did not have facilities nearby, where they could obtain a state-issued photo ID. Some extreme cases included residents living more than 100 miles (160km) away from the nearest bureau.
This new voter identification requirement affected up to 2.3 million voters, according to an analysis by the Houston Chronicle.
The situation is even direr in Hispanic communities where up to 40% of voters lack the required government-issued photo IDs to vote.
Read more: Birth certificates for election identification in Texas
If you do not have your government-issued photo ID up-to-date, do your best to renew it as soon as possible. Most forms of US photo IDs require citizens to provide a certified copy of their US Birth Certificate alongside the application form.
Make sure to order a government-issued, legally-valid US Birth Certificate online to save yourself some time and hassle before Election Day.
US citizens interested in obtaining specific information in regard to state voter ID requirements may contact election officials in the jurisdiction where they wish to register and vote.
For more info on voter identification laws in effect for every US state in 2022, you may visit the National Conference of State Legislatures at NCSL.org.
United States midterm elections are general federal elections that occur close to the half-way point of a president’s four-year term of office. They usually take place after the first Monday in November.
The following offices usually go up for election during midterm elections:
Various other local elections are often held in the midterms, including legislative, municipal, mayoral, and county elections. Historically, there is usually lower voter turnout at midterm elections.