Election’s office reminds voters about ID’s, sample ballots, campaigning gear plus early voting schedule
(Seguin) – Today officially kicks off the start of the March 1, 2022, Republican and Democratic Primary Elections. Today begins the election’s two-week early voting period. The election features the gubernatorial race along with a host of other statewide and county wide races.
Guadalupe County Elections Administrator Lisa Hayes says before heading to the polls, she is reminding voters that they will have to choose a ballot in which to cast. That’s because during this round, candidates will be looking to secure their nominations for their respective party.
“So, the Primaries are party elections so that means that the two major parties are holding elections to determine who is going to be on the ballot in November and in November, in the General Election, all the parties are on the ballot. So, the Primary and the Primary Run-off, should it be necessary, are working towards that election so because Texas does closed primaries – this is legally mandated – that means in order to vote in this election, you have to pick which party ballot you would like to vote on. If you want to vote in this election, you have to make a choice and if you vote in one party’s primary and that party has a run-off – and if you wanted to vote, you would have to vote in the same party’s run-off. That can be a little confusing but if you don’t vote in the Primary, you can vote in anyone’s run-off that’s having one,” says Hayes.
It will then be in November, that Hayes says voters will get to choose their top candidate for the various positions.
“But the big thing is to know this is what leads up to the candidates that end up on the November election ballot for these major parties. So that can be confusing for voters because we get used to the November Constitution Amendment Election where there’s constitutional amendments. It’s not party related at all and then the November General which is this year’s gubernatorial where we have all the parties on the ballot but in order for these major party candidates to get to the November ballot, this is what they have to do. They have to go through the Primary,” said Hayes.
Hayes says her office hopes to again make voting easy with its early voting locations and schedule. She says keeping up with the schedule is also important this year as polls will be closed for one day during the early voting period.
“Early voting is going to be 11 days for this Primary Election. Normally, we don’t have a federal holiday in the middle of early voting. We do this year. President’s Day is Feb. 21. It’s a federal holiday. That means there will be no early voting on that second Monday of early voting, so I want to voters to know that. I’d certainly hate for voters to take the time to go to an early voting location to find that we are closed. So, we have early voting Feb. 14 through Friday, Feb. 18, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday Feb. 19 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, Feb. 20 noon to 6 p.m.; Feb. 21 as we discussed, all early voting locations will be closed and then voting will resume on Tuesday Feb. 22 and run through Feb. 25 and then we are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. that whole week to give voters a little more flexibility in case they need to come before or after work. So, we’ve got six early voting locations for the voters to come out to. The hours are the same at all of the locations and that list is available on our website,” said Hayes.
Voters will also not want to forget their photo ID before heading to an early voting location.
Hays says although those blue and white voter registration certificates that you recently received in the mail are not required, that ID will be “absolutely mission critical” for folks to vote.
“Voters need to bring their photo ID. That’s what they need to bring. You need to provide a photo ID when you come to vote in Texas. Typically, voters like to use their driver’s license. There are other items that can be used and those are on our website – but driver’s license, passport, military ID, things of that nature can be used to vote. That’s the main thing. Bring that and some patience in case there are some lines. We’re hoping there aren’t, but we are still doing social distancing and our COVID protocols to keep everyone safe and sanitized and touchless voting and things like that, so we just ask that voters be patient with us while we do everything, we can to keep everyone safe,” said Hayes.
Hayes says there’s even some flexibility should your ID be expired.
“The rule in Texas regarding photo ID for voting purposes is a driver’s license can be expired up to four years unless the voter is 70 years of age or older and then there’s no expiration date. So, there’s quite a bit of leeway there in regard to the driver’s license expiration date for the voters,” said Hayes.
Any registered voter in Guadalupe County may vote early at any one of the following locations. They include the Seguin Elections Office; Cibolo Fire Station #2; Central Texas Technology Center; Redemptive Grace Ministries; New Berlin City Hall and the Schertz Elections Office Annex.
Sample ballots for each voter is also available on the county election website or for pick up at each of the election offices. Election officials remind voters that they are also welcomed to bring that sample ballot or any other type of voter guide with them to the polls to help cast their ballot. Voters are also prohibited from coming into the polling location wearing any kind of campaigning gear, hats, t-shirts, buttons etc.
The Guadalupe County Elections website is available at co.guadalupe.tx.us.