Important Information Including Deadline For Registered Voters Who Wish To Change Their Party Enrollment And The Difference Between Independent and Unenrolled And What It Means For You On Election Day
Upton Town Clerk Kelly A. McElreath reminds residents that Wednesday, February 10th is the deadline to register to vote if they want to participate in the Massachusetts Presidential Primary on March 1st.
February 10th is also the deadline for registered voters who wish to change their party enrollment either to another party or to “unenrolled,” which is commonly referred to as “independent.” This should not be confused with the United Independent Party (UIP); a party that will have ballots available but with no candidates printed on them. Voters registered in UIP will NOT be eligible to take a Democratic, Republican, or Green-Rainbow ballot.
With spirited contests in both parties, pervasive advertising and intense coverage in early primary states, some voters may want to vote for a candidate in a different party from the one they are registered in now.
To do that, however, the voter must switch to the other party or to “unenrolled” status by 8 p.m. on February 10th.
Unenrolled voters or voters enrolled in political designations can ask for any party ballot on Primary Day, but someone registered in a party can only vote on that party’s ballot. A Democrat cannot take a Republican ballot, and a Republican cannot take a Democratic one.
City/Town Hall will be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on February 10th for voters who wish to change their party registration status or for persons wishing to register for the first time. Towns with fewer than 1,500 voters will have voter registration available at least from 2 to 4 p.m. and from 7 to 8 p.m. on February 10th.
Persons who are United States Citizens, residents of Massachusetts, and who will be at least 18 years old on or before March 1st are eligible to register. Those meeting these qualifications who have a Massachusetts Driver’s License can submit their registration online at www.RegisterToVoteMA.com. Those registering by mail should have their form hand-canceled to ensure it is postmarked before the deadline.