ATLANTA — While the 2020 presidential primary season is now officially underway, unlike four years ago, Georgia is not part of the early wave of states that will participate in selecting the candidates.
During the 2016 election cycle, Georgia was part of the giant "Super Tuesday" wave of elections in late-February, but this cycle, Georgia has shifted its presidential primaries back by about a month to Tuesday, March 24.
It is anticipated that several of the remaining Democratic candidates will have dropped out by the time Georgia's primary rolls around, but many voters are eagerly anticipating the opportunity to vote early as opposed to waiting for the presidential primary date itself.
For those interested in voting in Georgia's primary, the deadline for registration is fast approaching. The final day to register is Monday, Feb. 24.
Advance in-person voting for the 2020 presidential primary begins on Monday, March 2, 2020, in limited locations in each of the counties around the state. Hours and locations may vary.
Do I need to register to vote?
If you’re not already registered to vote in Georgia or your address has changed, you must register to vote by Monday, Feb. 24, to participate in the March 24 Georgia presidential primary. Check your registration status online at www.mvp.sos.ga.gov.
How can I register to vote in Georgia?
Voters can register to vote online at registertovote.sos.ga.gov if you already have a Georgia driver’s license number or a state-issued ID number.
You can also fill out a paper voter registration application by printing it out from the Georgia Secretary of State’s website, or by picking up an application at post offices, libraries and county election offices. Paper registration applications must be returned or postmarked by Monday, Feb. 24.
If I don’t have a driver’s license or state ID, can I still register to vote?
Yes. You’ll have to complete a paper application and mail it or deliver it to your county’s elections office. If you mail it, it must be postmarked by Feb. 24.
On the paper application, provide the last four digits of your Social Security number to register to vote.
Proof of Georgia residency is required either when you register or when you vote for the first time. That proof can include a current utility bill, bank statement, government check or another government document that shows your name and address.
Do I need a photo ID to vote?
Photo identification is required by law, before casting a ballot in person in Georgia.
The state’s photo ID law allows registered voters to show:
- a state driver’s license -- even if it’s expired
- any valid state or federal government-issued photo ID (including a free ID card issued by your county registrar's office or the Georgia Department of Driver Services)
- a valid U.S. passport
- a photo employee ID from any branch, department, agency, or entity of the federal government, state government or any county, municipality, board, authority or other entity of this state
- a valid U.S. military photo ID
- a valid tribal photo ID.
If you do not have one of the six acceptable forms of photo identification noted above, the state of Georgia offers a free ID card that can be issued at any county registrar's office or Department of Driver Services.
To obtain a free voter identification card, the voter must provide a photo identity document or approved non-photo identity document which includes full legal name and date of birth; documentation which shows the voters date of birth; evidence that the applicant is a registered voter; and documentation showing the applicant's name and residential address.
Who registers people to vote?
Voter registration is primarily managed by county election offices, which then submit voter information to the Georgia Secretary of State's office.
When voters show up on Election Day or at early voting locations, election employees check your photo ID against voter registration lists to verify that you’re eligible to cast a ballot.
When can I vote?
Voters may begin voting in person at early voting locations on the fourth Monday prior to an election date at a designated early voting location in their county.
Voters are not required to provide a reason for voting early in Georgia. When casting your vote in person, you must present appropriate photo identification.
Voters may not cast early votes on the Sunday or Monday prior to Election Day. On Election Day, voters must report to their neighborhood precincts and present a valid photo ID to cast their ballots.
Some counties offer ballot delivery for registered voters who are hospitalized. Contact your county's registrar at least five days prior to the election for information and procedures involved with this option.
Can I vote by mail?
Any registered Georgia voter can vote absentee by mail. Just complete the application found at your home county's election website. Then, mail, fax, email (as an attachment), or drop the completed application off at your county registrar's office.
Mail-in absentee ballots can be requested no earlier than 180 days prior to Election Day and must be received by your county's registrar no later than the close of the polls on Election Day.
Important Dates For the 2020 Election Cycle
The Georgia Secretary of State's office has released dates for events related to this year's elections. Here are a list of critical dates associated with Georgia's 2020 election cycle:
- Feb. 24, 2020 - Voter Registration Deadline for the March 24 Presidential Preference Primary
- March 2, 2020 - Advance (in-person) voting begins for the Presidential Preference Primary
- March 14, 2020 - Mandatory Saturday voting for the Presidential Preference Primary
- March 20, 2020 - Final date for advance voting in the Presidential Preference Primary
- March 24, 2020 - Georgia Presidential Preference Primary
- April 20, 2020 - Voter Registration Deadline for May 19 General Primary Election
- May 19, 2020 - General Primary Election for local, state and federal offices
- Oct. 5, 2020 - Voter Registration Deadline for November General Election
- Nov. 3, 2020 - 2020 General Election
2020 Georgia Presidential Primary Sample Ballots
List of advance voting information for metro Atlanta counties (click the links for more)
Bartow County - (select county from drop-down list)
Butts County - (select county from drop-down list)
Pickens County - (select county from drop-down list)
Pike County - (select county from drop-down list)
MORE VOTER RESOURCES