• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Expat Life
How to vote as an American expat abroad
Photo: Jamelah e. / Flickr Creative Commons.

How to vote as an American expat abroad

The Local · 1 Mar 2016, 15:00

Published: 01 Feb 2016 18:46 GMT+01:00
Updated: 01 Mar 2016 15:00 GMT+01:00

Even if you’re living thousands of miles away from the US of A, don’t fret - you can still have your voice heard from abroad.

The Local looks at the fairly simple steps involved in getting you to the presidential vote.

Voting absentee with your state

To vote in your state’s primary, presidential and any other election, you first have to register as an absentee online with the Federal Voting Assistance Program, or VoteFromAbroad.org. The US State Department recommends doing this for those living abroad at the start of each year so you can keep getting ballots sent to you.

Then print, sign and send the resulting form to your state election office. You should get your ballot by mail or electronically (depending on the state) 45 to 30 days before the vote.

What if you don’t have a US address?

Don’t worry! Just register with the last state where you lived before leaving the US.

Plus, 24 states and Washington DC allow American citizens who have never lived in the US to register where a parent is eligible to vote. Find a list of these states here.

Vote in-person at the Global Primary (if you’re a Democrat)

Unlike Republicans, Democrats who live abroad get their own primary to vote until March 8th with the group Democrats Abroad, which is given state-level recognition in the Democratic National Committee. This is an alternative to voting in your state's primary.

There are two ways you can do this. First, you can vote in-person at one of the Democrats Abroad voting centres between March 1st and March 8th. You must register as a member to vote and can do that online beforehand, or at the centre. Just bring your US passport along.

Check with chapters for more information here or 

Second, if you can’t get to one of the voting centres, simply print out the ballot online and email it to PrimaryVoting@democratsabroad.org or mail it to:

International Chair, Democrats Abroad

Stettenerstr. 61

83209 Prien, Germany

OR

Shari Temple

Nordstrasse 3

85417 Marzling Germany

Where to vote in the Democrats' Global Primary in Germany:

Augsburg: March 5th

Reesegarden im Kulturhaus Abraxas
Sommestraße 30

Berlin: March 6th

Institute for Cultural Diplomacy (ICD)
Genthiner Straße 20, 10785 Berlin
 
 
Karen Schneider
Beethovenstrasse 32
Bornheim-Merten 53332
 
 
Bill Purcell
Werner-Bergengrien-Strasse 10
Neuss 41470
 
 
Yours Australian Bar
Rahmhofstrasse 2-4
 
 
Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung
Rathausmarkt 5
 
Story continues below…
 
Cafe Inti
Burgstrasse 17
 
 
Hotel/Cafe Goldinger
Von-Richtofen-Strasse 18
Landstuhl 66849

Munich: March 1st

Check link above for more info, or here.

Nuremberg: March 4th

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut
Gleißbühlstrasse 9

Stuttgart: March 4th

Ratskeller Restaurant
Marktplatz 1

Wiesbaden: March 5th

Andechser im Ratskeller
Schloßpl 6, Wiesbaden 65183

Other cities are also supposed to be hosting voting centres, so check with local chapters for more details.

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Germany to tighten checks of soldiers amid jihadist fears
Photo: DPA.

The German army are planning stricter checks of their soldiers as officials fear that jihadists could be using the armed forces as a way to train.

New train line to cut 2 hours off Berlin-Munich trips
Photo: DPA

It has been 25 years in the making, but on Wednesday the rail line that is set to mark a new era for travel between Germany's capital and its economic powerhouse went live.

AfD leader attacked and beaten in Mainz
Uwe Junge. Photo: DPA

The leader of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) in Rhineland-Palatinate was attacked on the street on Tuesday evening by a group of young men.

100 flights cancelled due to Frankfurt airport security alert
Travelers being evacuated from Terminal 1 of Frankfurt airport. Photo: DPA.

UPDATE: Some 100 flights were cancelled on Wednesday at Frankfurt Airport after the major transfer hub went on alert because a woman had managed to evade security checks.

Record 125k people file suit against Canada trade deal
A leader of one of the groups opposing the trade deal stacks another box full of lawsuit documents, presented to the Constitutional Court on Wednesday. Photo: DPA.

More than 125,000 Germans have filed the largest citizen lawsuit in German history against the controversial proposed CETA trade deal between Canada and the EU.

Merkel: 'Germany will remain Germany'
Photo: DPA.

One year after Angela Merkel first declared "we can do this," leading to a huge uptick in refugees applying for asylum, the Chancellor reflected this week on her policies and the future of Germany.

Nazi beach resort ruin turned into luxury playground
Prora. Photo: DPA

One of the biggest relics left behind by the Nazis is undergoing a radical transformation on a German island, harnessing a property boom to become a luxury tourist destination.

Berlin plans to be first state to arm police with tasers
Photo: DPA.

Berlin's plans to arm police patrols with taser guns would make it the first German state to implement extensive use of the electroshock weapon.

Far-right AfD leader injured by flying frozen cake
Jörg Meuthen and a cake. Photo: DPA

The co-leader of the far-right AfD party was attacked with a cake while attending a political event on Monday. But the fact the dessert was frozen made the act "dangerous", according to the politician.

Underwater pensioner hunts boats on famed Bavarian lake
A passenger boat on Lake Starnberg. Photo: DPA

"I love chasing the ships, and what a great feeling it is when they sound the horn!" he gleefully exclaims.

National
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
National
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
National
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Lifestyle
What's on in Germany: events for August 2016
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
7,567
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd