Las Vegas is known for its parties. There's the casinos, light shows, and other events. However, this weekend, thousands of women took over the city sporting pink hats and carrying anti-Trump, pro-women's rights posters. They were part of the #PowertothePolls activation, encouraging individuals to register to vote in time for the 2018 elections.
The program leaders chose to host the activation in Nevada, which has six electoral votes, because it is a perennial swing state, going to Republicans in 2000 and 2004 and Democrats in 1996 and 2012. Although its still incredibly early — Nevada holds its primary election on June 12, 2018 per Ballotpedia, the next election will be essential for those who care about environmental rights, health care, women, immigrants, minorities and others who have been victimized by the Trump agenda.
After all, last year saw a systematic dismantling of the State Department, the announcement of the country's withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, and an attempt to ban individuals from six Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States. At home, Trump failed to condemn white supremacists who killed 32-year-old Heather Heyer in Charlottesville, Virginia. Abroad, tensions between the country and North Korea escalated while others were shocked by Trump's comments when tragedy struck London.
But, unless you're a high school civics teacher, the rules around voter registration can be confusing. Here are the details:
- In 38 states, it's possible to register to vote online as long as you're a U.S. citizen who will be 18 by Election Day. For those who have been registered in the past, but may have changed their names since the last election, it's important to re-register with your new name.
- If you've moved, you'll need to re-register as well. You can check your registration information including your name, address, and political party online at Can I Vote. If you do need to re-register, you'll only need to register once for all elections — including those at the federal, state, and local level whether they are primary, general, or special elections.
- If you'll be out of town, you can request an absentee ballot. You won't need to change your address to receive this ballot, it's mailed in advance of the election. Just fill it out when you get it and send it back to your local election commission.
- Once you've been incarcerated, may assume that you can't vote again — that's not true. In two states — Maine and Vermont — you retain the right to vote even while in prison. In other states, you may regain your right to vote after being released from prison or finishing your parole, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.