October 9 is the last day to register to vote in time for the November election and as Nov. 6 inches closer there are questions about who is eligible to cast a ballot.
Some people still have questions about whether they can register to vote and Tim Snow, the Kalamazoo County Clerk, discussed about how a criminal record impacts eligibility.
Snow said, “It's going to be an exciting election, lots of things going on. Interesting ballot proposals not to mention, we're replacing our entire state leadership. With the governor, secretary of state, attorney general."
The question was posed if someone with a felony conviction is disqualified from voting in Michigan.
Courtney DiFrancesco, a voter, said, "I don't think they can, but I don't know, I don't know any of the laws like that."
Mayamiko Kadaluka said, “Admittedly I don't know, but I mean considering they are United States citizens, I think they should be able to vote."
Rachael McVay, an absentee voter, said. "I don't think they can vote, but I'm not for sure."
The answer is that a felony conviction doesn’t affect the right to vote in Michigan, however, Snow says having a criminal history can only impact your right to vote if you haven't completed your sentence or paid your dues.
He said, "In Michigan for those that have been convicted and have served, if you're done. If you have completed your sentence. You have done everything you are supposed to do. Your voting rights are restored."
In fact, people in jail awaiting trial can vote as well.
Snow said, “Even those perhaps that have been arrested and haven't been arraigned, their process hasn't started yet, those folks are still eligible to vote."
Tuesday, Oct. 9, is the deadline to register to vote. You must be a United States citizen and 18-years-old by Nov. 6. You need be a resident of Michigan and a resident of the city or township you are applying to register to vote.
Here are the steps you need to follow to register by Oct. 9, 2018:
- Visit a local Secretary of State branch office. They’ll be open until 5 p.m.
- Visit a local county, city, or township clerk's office. Be aware, some close at 4:30 p.m.
- Go online at www.Michigan.gov/sos for an application and either take it to the appropriate city or county clerk where you live; or send it by U.S. mail with a postmark date of the Oct. 9 deadline (or earlier). Addresses are included on the application.
To verify if you are registered, to review the issues and candidates on the ballot, or to track your absentee ballot, visit the Secretary of State website.