King County Elections mailed ballots and local voters’ pamphlets Wednesday to over 1.3 million registered voters for the Aug. 6 primary election.
“With same-day registration and prepaid postage on ballots, voting has never been easier and more accessible,” said Julie Wise, director of King County Elections, in a news release. “There are no longer the barriers of restrictive deadlines or needing a stamp- those barriers are gone. Vote and make your voice heard.”
Collectively, voters will have the opportunity to weigh in on four ballot measures and 56 races for a total of 218 candidates, including those running for city and county council, mayor, school board and in special districts across the county. Kent voters will see three City Council races and a Puget Soud Fire measure on the ballot.
King County Elections is forecasting a 36 percent turnout based on past similar elections but hopes that same-day registration, prepaid postage, and an increase in ballot drop box locations will increase participation countywide.
This August’s Primary will mark the first election where voters will be able to register to vote and cast their ballot on Election Day through same-day voter registration. This change was part of a package of democracy-focused bills passed by lawmakers in the 2018 legislative session. Pre-registration for 16 and 17 year olds (also known as the Future Voter Program) and a version of automatic voter registration were also included in that package.
The deadline to register to vote online is July 29. Voters can register and vote up through 8 p.m. on Election Day at any of our Vote Center locations around King County. Vote Centers are available now in Renton and Seattle. Vote Centers will open in Bellevue, Kenmore, and Federal Way on July 29. While same-day registration is now possible, King County Elections is encouraging voters not to wait but to get their registration completed or updated and ballot cast as soon as possible.
Ballots must be postmarked by Election Day, Aug. 6, or returned to one of the nearly 70 ballot drop box locations across the county. Ballots can be returned at any time before the deadline – but the earlier, the better. Drop boxes are open 24 hours, 7 days a week beginning July 17.
Voters who do not receive a ballot by Monday, July 22 or who have questions should call King County Elections at 206-296-VOTE (8683).