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How to Vote in Pennsylvania’s 2022 Elections

En español | Pennsylvania's Nov. 8 general election will decide races for governor, U.S. House and Senate and several state offices. The state’s primary was May 17.

Essential info:

  • Absentee and mail voting: All registered voters can request a no-excuse mail-in ballot and vote from home for November's general election. Absentee ballots are also available for people who are out of town on Election Day or who have an illness or disability that prevents them from going to the polls.
  • Voting in person on Election Day: The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 8. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Election Day In Reading Pennsylvania
A woman walks into a polling place in Reading, PA.
MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle vi/MediaNews Group via Getty Images

What's new this year?

Pennsylvania adopted a new congressional map after losing a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives following the 2020 Census, which could impact which U.S. House, state legislature and local office candidates appear on your ballot.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court in August upheld the state's mail voting law, which will allow all voters to cast no-excuse mail-in ballots in 2022 and in future elections.

What races are on the ballot and who's running?

  • Governor: Doug Mastriano (R), Josh Shapiro (D)
  • Lieutenant Governor: Austin Davis (D), Carrie DelRosso (R)
  • U.S. Senate: John Fetterman (D), Mehmet Oz (R)
  • U.S. House: all 17 seats. Pennsylvania lost a seat as a result of the 2020 Census.
  • State Senate: 25 of 50 seats
  • State House: all 203 seats

How do I register to vote?

  • Online: Use the state’s voter registration portal to register, check your registration status or change your party affiliation. The deadline to register for the general election is Oct. 24.

You can check if you are registered to vote through the Pennsylvania voter services and information portal.

How can I get a mail-in or absentee ballot? Are there important deadlines?

Any registered voter can request a no-excuse mail-in ballot and vote safely from home in November’s general election. You’ll need to submit a new request each year, but you can register with the state’s annual mail-in voter list to receive a ballot application by mail each February.

Absentee ballots, which are also submitted by mail, are reserved for people who have a disability or illness that prevents them from going to the polls — or for people who are out of town on the day of the election. 

You can apply for a mail-in or absentee ballot online, by mail or in person:

  • Online: Use the state’s ballot request portal. You’ll need a state driver’s license or a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation ID number to apply. If you don’t have either, you’ll be asked for the last four digits of your Social Security number and to upload a picture of your signature. If you don’t have a valid ID or a Social Security number, you’ll need to apply by mail or in person.

Return completed ballots by mail, in person or via another person, or “agent,” if you’re disabled. Election officials must receive ballots by Nov. 8 at 8 p.m. 

  • By mail: Seal your completed ballot in the inner secrecy envelope, then seal that envelope in the pre-addressed return envelope. Send it to your county board of elections office.
  • Through an agent: Most voters can’t enlist someone else to return their ballot. But if you have a disability that prevents you from applying for, receiving or returning a mail-in or absentee ballot yourself, you can designate an agent to return your ballot for you.

Use the state’s voter portal to track the status of your mail-in or absentee ballot.

In the event of an emergency, such as an unexpected illness or unplanned trip out of town, you may be able to request an emergency absentee ballot.

Can I vote in person before Election Day?

Yes. Once your county finalizes and begins distributing mail-in and absentee ballots, you can request and complete one in person at your county board of elections office.

When is Election Day? When are polls open?

The general election takes place on Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Use the state's voter information portal to find a polling place near you.

Do I need identification to vote?

No — unless it is your first time voting, in which case you’ll need to show an approved form of ID like a state-issued driver’s license or a U.S. passport.

Editor’s note: This guide was updated on Sept. 19 with more information about voting in Pennsylvania. The guide was first published on July 30, 2020.

Also of Interest

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