Loose Lips

Dear Votemaster: If You Vote With a Special Ballot

votemaster_graphicMy residency has changed in the past couple years. I think that my voter registration is in order, but what can I expect at the polls on Tuesday from voting officials in case they need to verify my identity and residency?

First off, you can check your voter registration against the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics' online database here. (Simply enter your name, date of birth and ZIP code.)

In situations where there are questions with voter registration—and for those who are registering and voting on the same-day—poll workers will most likely mandate voting by a special ballot and present proper identification. Once DCBOEE verifies the information and determines eligibility, that vote will then be counted.

Those who vote with such special ballots will have to complete a voter registration update/same-day registration form, and sign an "affirmation of eligibility." (Essentially, your John Hancock saying the information is true.)

As for verifying identity and residency, here are the items you should bring to the polls in case you think your registration may be questioned: government-issued photo ID, a utility bill, bank statement, government check or paycheck, and other government document showing full name and address.

Special ballot voters can contact DCBOEE starting Sept. 21 to see whether the vote was accepted. (Either call 866-328-6837 or go online to DCBOEE's "Check Your Special Ballot Status" link.)

Just as a reminder, submitting fraudulent information with a special ballot is greatly frowned upon. DCBOEE's warning: "Following the election, the Board of Elections and Ethics will forward the name of any voter who provides false information on the Same Day Registration Application or the Special Ballot Envelpe to the appropriate authorities for criminal prosecution (D.C. Code 1-1001-07)."

Happy voting, folks.