Voting Rights

Voting From Abroad

 

In the 2004 Presidential Election, many overseas Americans found absentee voting complicated and frustrating enough to conclude the incompetence was deliberate.  The opinion polls showed that Americans with passports (i.e. with some experience of the world outside America's borders) would vote overwhelmingly for John Kerry. The US government's official FVAP overseas voting website was inaccessible to some, confusing to most.  Many U.S. localities were inefficient in responding to registration requests; and incorrect or incomplete information given by some US Embassies. The situation improved for the 2006 elections and more so for 2008, but it is a work in progress.

HELADA is part of the fight to make sure every American citizen living overseas exercises the right to vote in U.S. federal elections. 

If you are a US citizen, 18 years or older, even if you have never lived in the United States, you are probably still eligible to vote. 

Registration is not automatic! 

It is the individual responsibility of every citizen to register, so it's vital that you take the initiative!  

Elections in the U.S. are conducted by county governments. Normally, you must mail a standardized registration post-card to the registrar of voters in the last U.S. county  you (or your parents) lived in (or were registered to vote in). It's advisable, but not required, to do this before moving overseas. Most counties are competent and honest, but a few are not. All are bound by federal voting rights laws as well as state law.  

For a fast, simple process to generate a registration card to mail to the correct county official, we recommend either the Vote From Abroad or Overseas Vote Foundation websites. VFA is maintained by Democrats Abroad. In either case, you can get up-to-date, non-partisan information. At the VFA website, you can also sign up for news and information from the Democratic Party Committees Abroad (DPCA), which is an official branch of the Democratic Party.. 

Next, be sure you are registered in the Democrats Abroad Greece database.  For more information contact DAGr at dpca_gr@yahoo.com. The Chair of DAGr is your "official" liaison with the US Embassy on voting rights issues.  

Don't hesitate to call the U.S. Embassy voting rights officer in the American Services Section at 210-7202421 or 210-7202423. Notarial hours are from 9:00 to 14.00, Monday through Friday (except on American and Greek holidays).

If you have difficulty registering to vote or you need more information, please email Harolynne Bobis at harolynne@yahoo.com, who will provide moral support and good practical advice. 

Federal Voting Assistance Programme (FVAP) - The FVAP is the official US government site for voter registration. One of the most useful parts of the FVAP site is the list of Secretaries of State or Directors of Elections

Overseas Vote Foundation (OVF) - The successor to Overseas Vote, which did a fantastic job in 2004 in registering US citizens overseas.

Vote From Abroad (VFA) - voting registration site maintained by Dems Abroad

FAIRVOTE: The Center for Voting and Democracy

 

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