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How to vote for a write-in candidate

Writing in the name of the candidate for President/Governor or the name of the Vice President /Lieutenant Governor is sufficient to the cast of a vote for the joint office.

Candidates may give out or publish information containing a diagram and instructions, including how to spell the candidate’s name, for casting a write-in vote.  Any abbreviation, misspelling, or minor variation in the form of the name of a candidate shall be disregarded in determining the validity of the write-in vote as long as the intended candidate can be determined.  Writing the last name will constitute a valid vote, unless there is more than one candidate with the same last name.

To vote for a person whose name is not listed on the ballot, you must follow these instructions:

  • Touch the box to the left of the word “WRITE-IN” in the contest for which you wish to write in a person’s name.  A write-in QWERTY keyboard will appear, with a text box to display your write-in choice.
    write in candidate box
  • Using the write-in QWERTY keyboard, enter the last name then the first name (or at least the initial of the first name) of the person for whom you wish to vote, by touching the keyboard letters one at a time. The name you enter will appear in the text box display above the keyboard. To make a space between parts of the name (for example, between last and first name), use the space bar at the bottom of the keyboard. To make a correction, use the back key found at the upper right corner of the keyboard.
    write-in candidate instruction and keyboard screen
    When you have entered the person's name, press the RECORD WRITE-IN button on the keyboard. Your write-in choice will be electronically recorded and return back to the ballot page.
    write in candidate box
    If you change your mind and no longer wish to cast a write-in vote, touch the red X next to the name of the write-in candidate. The red X will disappear, and you may make a new selection for that contest.

To cast a write-in vote on the audio ballot:

  • A voter must select "WRITE-IN" by following the audio ballot's recorded instructions for using the keypad to make selections.
  • The voter will hear instructions for entering a write-in candidate's name using the keypad. Letters are assigned to the numeric keys similar to a telephone.
  • The voter will use the keypad to enter, change and confirm each letter as he or she enters a write-in candidate's name.
  • After entering a write-in candidate's name, the voter needs to follow the audio ballot's instructions to continue voting the rest of the ballot.
  • The voter can follow the audio ballot's recorded instructions for changing a vote, including a write-in vote, before casing his or her ballot if he or she chooses.

To cast a write-in vote on an absentee or provisional ballot:

  • A voter must write the name of the write-in candidate on the designated write-in line under the contest title.
  • The voter must completely fill in the oval to the left of the write-in candidate's name.
  • In the case of an absentee ballot, the voter will need to contact their local board of elections for a new ballot if he or she changes his or her mind after writing a write-in candidate's name before casting the ballot.
  • The voter will need to see the Provisional Ballot Judge for a new ballot if he or she changes his or her mind after writing a write-in candidate's name before casting the ballot.