Federal & state elections on the ballot: US Senator, 2 US House members, Governor, and State Senate and House members
The Idaho Division of Elections oversees all Idaho elections.
Idaho Capital Sun, – April 1, 2021
The fate of several bills that would restrict voting or ballot initiative procedures in Idaho hang in the balance when the Legislature reconvenes April 6 after postponing the 2021 session due to a COVID-19 outbreak at the Capitol.
One would put new restrictions on turning in absentee ballots.
House Bill 223, pushed by House Majority Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, would make it a felony to mail or drop off other people’s absentee ballots. Moyle said he wanted to protect the security of elections and fend off so-called ballot harvesting by political activists. But many opponents said the bill would turn Idahoans into criminals for helping friends or loved ones by dropping ballots in the mail or taking them to a county elections office.
Two other proposals before the Legislature would impact the ballot initiative process.
Senate Bill 1110 would change the signature gathering requirements for initiatives. The bill would make it so that ballot initiatives would need to have signatures of 6% of voters in all 35 legislative districts, up from the current requirement of 18 legislative districts. Supporters say the bill increases voter involvement in the referendum process and spreads the work of verifying signatures more evenly among county clerks. Opponents say the bill makes it that much harder to get a referendum or initiative on the ballot.
House Joint Resolution 4 seeks to create an amendment to the Idaho Constitution that would prohibit the legalization of controlled substances unless approved by a two-thirds supermajority of the Idaho Legislature. Supports say they want to create a high bar for legalizing drugs. But opponents say the resolution is an attempt to head off a potential ballot initiative where a simple majority of voters could legalize medical marijuana. Nationally, 36 states have approved comprehensive medical marijuana programs, including Utah and Montana, according to the National Council of State Legislatures. In November 2020, Montana voters legalized possession and use of marijuana for adults 21 and over.
Email: Elections Division
Registering to Vote
Who can register
Any registered Idaho voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.
How to register
- Use our Register to Vote form below to fill out the National Voter Registration Form.
- Sign and date your form. This is very important!
- Mail or hand-deliver your completed form to the address we provide.
- Make sure you register before the voter registration deadline.
Election Day registration
If you have missed the voter registration deadline, you can still register to vote and a cast a ballot at the same time during early voting or on Election Day. Simply go to your regular polling place or early voting site to register and vote. You will need to show proof of residence and a photo ID. Contact your Local Election Office if you have any questions.
Voting Rights restoration
If you have been convicted of a felony and have questions about whether you can register to vote, visit Restore Your Vote to determine your eligibility.
Registration Status (form)
New Registration (form)
Voting as a Student
Overseas and Military Voting
You are a Military or Overseas voter if you are in uniformed services, living overseas OR a spouse or dependent of a uniformed services voter. To get registered and vote, you can utilize Overseas Vote Foundation.
If you have additional questions about elections and voting overseas you can use our state specific elections official directory or contact the Overseas Vote Foundation.
Voting with Disabilities
You may receive assistance to vote from any person of your choice. You may also ask for assistance from a poll worker.
Curbside assistance and home voting is available in special circumstances. Please make arrangements with your county clerk’s office in advance.
Each polling place in the state will be equipped with a ballot marking device to assist voters who have difficulty reading or marking a ballot vote privately and independently. The ballot marking device is intended to assist the visually impaired, voters with disabilities and the elderly.
Visually impaired voters can use headphones to listen to an audio ballot and make their selections using a Braille keypad. The ballot marking device has a touch screen with a zoom feature to enlarge the ballot print and a contrast feature to make the ballot easier to read for some voters. The ballot marking device only marks a ballot. No votes are stored in the machine. Votes are counted by the election board of your county. You can review and change your selections before the device marks a paper ballot. If you are using the ballot marking device, you may request a new ballot from a poll worker if you make a mistake. Additional instructions will be available at the polls and poll workers are trained to help if you request their assistance.
For more information, you can utilize the American Association of People With Disabilities (AAPD) resource.
Voting before election day at an absentee polling place is available. Contact your county clerk for dates, times and location of the absentee polling place in your county.
Vote by Mail (Absentee)
Absentee ballot rules
Any registered Idaho voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.
How to get Absentee ballot
- Use our Absentee Ballot form below to prepare your application.
- Sign and date the form. This is very important!
- Return your completed application to your Local Election Office as soon as possible. We’ll provide the mailing address for you.
- All Local Election Offices will accept mailed or hand-delivered forms. If it’s close to the deadline, call and see if your Local Election Office will let you fax or email the application.
- Make sure your application is received by the deadline. Your application must actually arrive by this time — simply being postmarked by the deadline is insufficient.
- Please contact your Local Election Office if you have any further questions about the exact process.
What to do next
- Once you receive the ballot, carefully read and follow the instructions.
- Sign and date where indicated.
- Mail your voted ballot back to the address indicated on the return envelope. Your voted ballot must arrive by the deadline or it will not be counted.
- Use the online absentee ballot tracker to check the status of your absentee ballot.
Absentee ballot application deadline
- In Person: 4 days before Election Day
- By Mail: 11 days before Election Day
Absentee ballot submission deadline
Absentee Ballot (form)
Elections Alert (Form)
Polling Place Locator
You can find your polling place by utilizing your state resource.
If you have further questions on your polling place location, please contact your county clerk.
Polling Place Hours
Polls will be open from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm on Election Day.
Poll Worker Information
In order to be a poll worker in Idaho, you must:
- Political affiliation preferred
- It is recommended that you are a resident of the election district for the 30 days prior to the election
- Complete required training
- Be entitled to compensation
- Students with citizenship who are 16 years old may work
To sign up, contact your local board of elections.
Secretary of State
Lawerence Denney, Idaho’s Secretary of State
Our Goal is Simplicity
As your Secretary of State, it is my pleasure to serve the people of Idaho and to welcome you to the Idaho Secretary of State website. In our effort to provide you with better information and increase the efficiency of our services, we have designed this site with our three major divisions in mind—Business Services, Elections, and Government Services.
Our Elections division works to ensure the accuracy and integrity of Idaho’s elections. By maintaining and modernizing the security and integrity of our election system, it is our intent to have every voice be heard and every vote counted properly. Our mission includes increasing transparency of campaign finances by simplifying the process of submitting and accessing disclosure reports.
In addition to the resources available on this website, the Secretary of State’s knowledgeable staff is also dedicated to providing you with timely information about our services. Should you need additional information, please contact the appropriate division. We look forward to serving you.
— Lawerence Denney