Voting in the primary? Here are 9 things you need to know

Orlando, FL. — Today is Florida’s primary.

If you haven’t submitted your mail-in ballot or voted early and plan to head to the polls today, here’s what you need to know:

1. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

2. The ballot will include partisan primary races for several congressional and legislative seats. Residents can cast ballots in several local contests, many of which are nonpartisan.

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3. Of course, where you live matters and will dictate where you can vote. Click here to find out county-specific information.

4. Florida is a closed primary state, which means if a race is contested by more than one party or with a write-in candidate, then only members of that party can vote in the race. The deadline to change or declare a party for the primary was July 20.

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5. For partisan contests, only those registered as Democrats or Republicans will be able to cast their ballot.

6. State law requires that vote-by-mail ballots must be mailed during specified time frames. The supervisors of elections must send ballots to absent stateside and overseas uniformed service members and to overseas civilians no later than 45 days before an election.

Here are the send periods for 2020:

• Presidential preference primary election: Feb. 1

• Primary election: July 11

• General election: Sept. 19

7. A pilot program has been set up to help blind and dyslexic voters. Read more about it here.

8. Races that only feature one party or are nonpartisan (judges) will be on all ballots. Even if you are a non-party affiliate, you can still vote in the primary for these offices.

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9. Beginning on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. following the primary, Channel 9 will host “Central Florida Decides,” bringing you live coverage, in-depth analysis and up-to-the-minute results.

The special is also streaming on WFTV Now, which is free on Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.


Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.