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How to Vote the Ocean This Election

Story by Olivia Angus

We are two weeks away from one of the biggest elections and if you’re not sure how you’re going to vote yet, let’s get you squared away.

How Does Voting Work Where You Live?

First, start by understanding how voting works where you live.  Things might be a little different this year because of COVID-19. Are you registered to vote?  Will you get a ballot in the mail? If so, has it arrived yet? Vote.org has all the resources you need to understand how to vote in your area.

Make a Plan

Okay, now that you know how voting will work this year, be sure to make a plan.  If you’re planning to mail in your ballot, make sure you set a reminder to mail it in by October 30th so it gets postmarked with more than enough time. Also, don’t forget to sign your ballot before sealing it!

If you plan to vote in person, check what time the polls are open and the location of the polling station.  Vote.org has a helpful poll locator. What will you do if the lines are long? Bring a book? Scroll on Instagram? What if you plan to vote around a meal time and the lines are long? Plan to bring water and a snack.

However you plan to vote, walk through the process, make a solid plan and maybe a backup plan too.

Do Your Homework

It doesn’t matter if you are a Republican, Democrat, Independent or party-free, I’m sure we can all agree that a plastic-free ocean is a better ocean.  The fact is, there are measures and candidates that help protect the ocean and those that harm the ocean.  Make sure you know which ones you’re voting for.

Looking at the national level, if your candidate is an incumbent, check out their voting record. Organizations like the League of Conservation Voters have a scorecard that rates representatives on their votes. If the candidate is local or a newcomer, check out their campaign page.  See what their plan is to protect the ocean and environment.  If they make no mention of the ocean and environment, chances are it’s not their priority.

VOTE!

Finally, don’t run the marathon only to stumble before the finish line.  Make sure to mail your ballot early or show up at the polls on November 3rd. Make your voice heard and vote the ocean!