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Virginia

We Can Vote is a nonpartisan resource center that provides regularly updated information and opportunities for each of us to do our part in making the 2020 elections safe, secure, and successful.

Election officials are doing their best to respond to COVID-19, and while the pandemic has disrupted many aspects of civic life, one thing is certain: America will hold elections this November. Together, we can help make sure every eligible voter is able to safely register, vote, and have their voices heard.

Virginia: Latest Election & Voting Updates

Last updated Sunday, May 24, 2020 11:48 PM ET

Important News

  • May 5, 2020 Official Update State Loosens Witness Requirement for Absentee Ballots

    Virginia will accept absentee ballots for the June 23 primary elections without the signature of a witness “for voters who believe they may not safely have a witness present while completing their ballot.” The change follows an agreement by the Virginia Attorney General and voting rights groups that sued the state over the witness requirement. 

  • May 1, 2020 Court Allows Towns to Postpone Elections

    The Virginia Supreme Court granted petitions made by the towns of Lovettsville, Middleburg, and Purcellville to move the May 19 municipal elections to June 4. Elections in the towns of Hamilton and Round Hill will still be held Tuesday, May 19.

  • April 11, 2020 Official Update New Laws Extend Absentee Voting and Early Voting

    Governor Ralph Northam signed several recently passed bills into law that change election laws and procedures for elections on or after July 1. The new laws will allow 45 days of early voting before election day, effectively allowing voters to request an absentee ballot for in-person and mail-in voting for any reason, expand timelines for submitting mail-in ballots, and implement automatic voter registration for individuals accessing DMV services.

  • April 13, 2020 Official Update Executive Order Details Changes to Primary Election

    Governor Northam issued an Executive Order detailing his decision to move the June 9 Primary election to June 23 to address the COVID-19 risks. The Order clarifies that no new candidates can be added to the ballot, absentee ballot requests must be made by June 16, the last day for in-person absentee voting is June 20, and that all mailed ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on June 23. The Order was amended to extend the voter registration deadline by eight days to May 26.

  • April 8, 2020 Official Update Governor Postpones Election

    Governor Northam announced today that the June primary election will be moved two weeks from June 9 to June 23. This change schedules the election after the June 10 end date of the current stay-at-home order. The Governor also requested that Virginia's General Assembly move other elections currently scheduled for May, but the legislature has not done so.

  • March 24, 2020 Official Update Virginia Encourages Voters to Cast Absentee Ballots

    The Virginia Department of Elections is encouraging voters to protect their health by voting absentee in upcoming elections. Voters can choose reason "2A My disability or illness" for absentee voting in the May 2020 elections.

  • March 9, 2020 CDC Recommendations for Election Polling Locations
  1. Tuesday, May 26, 2020

    Primary Election Voter Registration Deadline

  2. Tuesday, June 16, 2020

    Primary Election Absentee Ballot Application Deadline

    Voters may choose reason "2A My disability or illness" for absentee voting in the June 2020 election due to COVID-19. Your request must be received by your Registrar by 5:00 p.m.

  3. Tuesday, June 23, 2020

    Primary Election Absentee Ballot Deadline

    If you believe you may not safely have a witness present while completing the absentee ballot for the June 23, 2020 Primary Election, you may disregard the witness signature requirement. Return your ballot to your local registrar by 7:00 p.m. on Election Day.

  4. Tuesday, June 23, 2020

    Primary Election Day

  5. Tuesday, October 13, 2020

    General Election Voter Registration Deadline

  6. Tuesday, October 27, 2020

    General Election Absentee Ballot Application by Mail Deadline

    Your request must be received by your Registrar by 5:00 p.m.

  7. Saturday, October 31, 2020

    General Election Absentee Ballot Application In Person Deadline

    You may request an asbsentee ballot in person before 5:00 p.m. on October 31.

  8. Tuesday, November 3, 2020

    General Election Absentee Ballot Deadline

    A witness signature is required on absentee ballots. Note that this requirement was waived for the Primary Election, but the state has not yet said whether it will also be waived for the General Election.

  9. Tuesday, November 3, 2020

    Election Day

vote absentee icon. How to vote absentee in Virginia

Virginia currently allows voters to cast an absentee ballot only under certain circumstances; however, for elections in May or June 2020, any voter may request an absentee ballot and choose "2A My disability or illness" as the reason. The legislature has passed a law allowing absentee voting with no excuse for elections after July 1. 

Take Action to Support Safe & Secure Elections in Virginia

Below are some practical, positive actions you can take to help voters prepare for the 2020 election and cast their ballots in the way that’s best and healthiest for them.

(Read our guidelines for what we include.)

Information about voting is based on:

  • Official policy announcements on government websites
  • News stories citing verified statements from government officials

Information about actions people can take will be:

  • Non-partisan 
  • Positive and practical
  • Community-based and supported by trusted partners and networks

Policy information will focus on:

  • Proactive steps officials are taking to hold elections
  • How community groups, individuals and businesses are supporting elections
  • Public education efforts around voting
  • Pen and pencil icon. Demand a Plan for Safe Elections

    Virginia has not shared an official plan for holding safe elections in November. Send a letter to Governor Northam and demand that they share their plan.


    Demand a Plan

  • Hand raised icon. Volunteer to help with elections in your community

    Election officials will need more volunteers this year to help run elections while protecting public health. Sign up to be a volunteer in your community and support hard working election officials.


    Volunteer

About We Can Vote

Our Partners

Our Goal

We Can Vote is calling on all states and voting territories to develop clear election plans that protect our democracy while also preserving public health. Policymakers, and election administrators can act decisively to do the following:


  • Provide mail ballot options to all eligible voters, including the ability to request ballots online in a secure and equitable manner;
  • Preserve in-person voting options in November that:
    • Ensure sufficient hours and locations to prevent long lines or large crowds
    • Ensure enough in-person options on tribal lands and in other locations with limited mail access
    • Use best practices from public health officials to have healthy polling sites
  • Engage with major employers, colleges, and media so that any shifts in election administration serve voters in local communities, and so local communities can assist by volunteering to help by being poll workers for America's largest civic event;
  • Create rules and protocols through administrative and legislative action so that all eligible Americans can vote in November's election.

These simple steps can help ensure that eligible voters can access their ballots while minimizing the risks of this virus. These steps will allow communities to come together and support hard-working election officials who ensure that America's democracy is healthy and strong.