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AARP AARP States New Mexico Voters

How to Register, Vote and Track Your Ballot in New Mexico

En español | New Mexico offers same-day registration, and any registered voter can request an absentee ballot.

Elections in some cities, including Albuquerque, are being held in 2023. The next statewide elections are in 2024, with the primary on Tuesday, June 4, and the general election on Tuesday, Nov. 5.

Mario Romero of Pojoaque, New Mexico, fi
A man fills out a ballot at an early voting location in Pojoaque.

Essential info:

    • Upcoming elections: Visit the secretary of state’s website for information about upcoming statewide elections.
    • Absentee voting: All registered voters can request an absentee ballot.
    • Early in-person voting: Vote early at your county clerk’s office or at an early voting site, if your county offers them. ​​
    • Voting at the polls: You won’t need to show ID at the polls in a statewide election, unless you’re a first-time voter who registered by mail and didn’t include a copy of one. Some municipalities will require you to show ID to vote in local elections.

    Have there been recent changes to voting in New Mexico?

    A 2023 law mandates that:

    • Same-day registration is offered at every polling place statewide. 
    • Each county offers at least two ballot drop boxes, although counties can apply to waive this requirement.
    • A voluntary permanent absentee voter list is established by Jan. 1, 2024, so voters can automatically receive an absentee ballot ahead of statewide elections if they choose to do so.
    • Election Day will be considered a public school holiday statewide.
    • Voting rights are reinstated for those convicted of a felony once they’re released from prison.
    • The Native American Voting Rights Act ensures Native American tribes have access to the same resources for voting as other parts of New Mexico. This includes ballot drop boxes and allowing tribal residents to use a government building as their mailing address for voter registration and mail ballot applications.

    Redistricting in 2021 has changed certain boundaries of some state legislative and U.S. congressional districts. Note that a lawsuit over the congressional map is pending.

    How do I register to vote?

    Register online, by mail or in person:

    • Online: Use the state’s voter registration portal. You’ll need to provide a current or expired New Mexico driver’s license or state-issued ID number, your date of birth and your Social Security number.

    Note that those who recently moved to New Mexico and do not have a state ID may not register online, but can register by mail or in person using their out-of-state ID and another government document, such as a utility bill or bank statement, with their name and current address.
    New Mexico also offers same-day registration during early voting and on Election Day at polling places and county clerks’ offices. You will need to sign an affidavit under oath that you haven’t already voted in the election.

    Check if you’re registered to vote through the state’s voter information portal.

    Does my party affiliation matter when I vote in the primaries?

    Only people who are registered as Democrats, Republicans or Libertarians can participate in their party’s respective primaries in New Mexico. 

    Unaffiliated and minor party voters can participate if they update their registration to a major party during early voting or on Election Day. A New Mexico driver’s license, state ID or another valid form of ID is required.

    How can I get an absentee ballot?

    Any registered voter can request a no-excuse absentee ballot online, by mail or in person.

    • Online: Use the state’s voter information portal to complete an application. You’ll need to confirm your driver’s license or state ID number and the last four digits of your Social Security number.
    • By mail: Download, print and complete a ballot application. Or call or email your clerk’s office to request an application. Mail your completed application with proper postage to your county clerk’s office.

    Absentee ballot applications must be received by Thursday, May 30, 2024, for the primary and by Thursday, Oct. 31, 2024, for the general election.

    How do I return my mail ballot during an election?

    Return completed ballots by mail or in person by 7 p.m. on Election Day. You can return someone else’s completed ballot if you’re a caretaker or immediate family member.

    • In person: Drop off your completed ballot at your county clerk’s office, at any Election Day polling location or at any official drop box location. 

    You may cast your ballot at a polling place if your absentee ballot was mailed but not received by Election Day. To cancel your mail ballot, you must sign an affidavit.
    Use the state’s voter information portal to track the status of your absentee ballot.

    Can I vote in person before Election Day?

    Vote early and in person at your county clerk’s office or an additional early voting location, if offered.

    Early voting begins 28 days before an election — that’s Tuesday, May 7, 2024, for the primary and Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2024, for the general election. Check the state’s voter information portal or contact your county clerk for more information.

    What do I need to know about voting at the polls on Election Day?

    You can cast a ballot as long as you were in line before the polls closed. Use the state's voter information portal to find a polling place near you. 

    All voting locations have special equipment to assist individuals with hearing, visual or physical impairments. The secretary of state’s website has more information about resources available to people with disabilities.

    Do I need identification to vote?

    You need to show ID in New Mexico if you did not provide ID when you registered and the state’s roster indicates ID is required.

    In that case, you’ll be asked to show a current photo ID or a utility bill, bank statement or paycheck that confirms your name and address. Those without ID can cast a provisional ballot.

    ID also is required for same-day registration.

    Editor’s note: This guide was updated on Sept. 8, 2023, with more information about voting in New Mexico. The guide was first published on Aug. 18, 2020. 

    Also of Interest:

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