As we head into the Fourth of July holiday weekend, Cook County Clerk David Orr suggests celebrating our independence by registering to vote for the November 4 Presidential Election.
“Nothing could be more patriotic than registering to vote because casting a ballot gives you the power to help decide who will be elected to office,” Orr said. “I’ve said for months that 2008 is going to be a big year for participation and our numbers so far show that to be true.”
The Clerk’s office received 16,104 new voter registrations in June, an 11 percent increase from June 2004, the last presidential election year. Registrations during the first half of 2008 are up nearly 18 percent over the same time period in 2004, from 76,531 to 90,025.
Orr reminds voters they need to re-register if they have recently moved. Voters who change their name must update their records either before Election Day or at the polls. Teenagers who will be 18 by Nov. 4 can register to vote now.
The Clerk’s office, which administers elections in suburban Cook County, will send a voter identification card to each voter after the applications are processed. The card lists each voter’s precinct information and voting districts. Your voting information can also be found by entering your address into the “Suburban Voter’s Toolkit” at voterinfonet.com.
Who can vote
To qualify to vote, you must be: a U.S. citizen; at least 18 years old by Election Day (Nov. 4); and a resident of the same precinct at least 30 days prior to the election.
How to register to vote
Mail-in voter registration applications are available in English, Spanish and Chinese, and can be printed from voterinfonet.com. The Clerk’s office can also mail you an application; call (312) 603-0906 to request one.
After completing the application, prospective voters should return it to the Cook County Clerk’s office at 69 W. Washington St., Suite 500, Chicago IL 60602.
You can also register to vote in person by visiting:
- One of the Cook County Clerk’s six locations;
- Your local village, city or township hall;
- An Illinois Secretary of State’s drivers license facility or other state government offices, including military recruitment and public assistance offices.
Before every election, the Clerk’s office trains volunteer deputy registrars, including many high school students who conduct registration drives at their schools and in their communities. To get involved in this effort, call (312) 603-1099.
The Clerk’s office also makes registration and election information available through partnerships with organizations, libraries and higher education institutions,
For more information, suburban Cook County residents can contact the Cook County Clerk’s office by visiting www.voterinfonet.com or calling (312) 603-0996.