Understanding Your August 7 Ballot

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Friday, July 27, 2018, 7:27 am
Alice Dreger

The East Lansing City Clerk’s office, which is responsible for overseeing elections in East Lansing, has been working to make sure election inspectors understand how to help voters with the August 7 ballot. Here’s some of what you may want to know if you’re completing an absentee ballot or planning to vote at the polls on August 7:

There are two sides to the ballot. One side has primary elections for the Republican, Democratic, and Libertarian primaries. The other side has ballot proposals, including the income tax proposal for East Lansing. Want to know what your ballot will look like? Follow this link.

Don’t screw up your ballot….but if you do, stop and get a new one! East Lansing’s City Clerk Jennifer Schuster suggests voters approach the primary part of the August 7 ballot by “staying in your lane.” In other words, be careful to choose one of the three “lanes” for primary voting – Republican, Democratic, or Libertarian – and don’t wander from party to party. If you do, your primary votes won’t count.

In previous elections, voters were generally asked which party’s ballot they wanted to have. In this case, ALL THREE parties are listed on the same ballot. But you can only vote in one. If you do wander from lane to lane, again, your votes won’t count for the primaries.

In the event you goof up anything on the ballot, be sure to stop and ask for a new ballot immediately. If you are even a little unsure, stop and ask. If you’re voting absentee that means going to the City Clerk’s office, and if you’re at the polls on August 7, that means going to an official worker at the polls.

They will consider your ballot “spoiled” and will issue you a new one. (There’s no shame in doing this!)

Before you vote, consider learning about the proposals. Here at ELi, we provide non-partisan information about local elections. So we’ve put together a widely-praised nonpartisan voter guide to the income tax proposal. Check it out! (And share it.) If you’re in Ingham County, also check out our article explaining the county jail and justice millage proposal.

Where can you vote absentee or in person? Find out at the City Clerk’s dedicated election page.


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