So, Can I Change My Vote? Probably Not, Despite Trump’s Tweet

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images.

With one week until Election Day, it only makes sense that President Donald Trump is getting more antsy about results. This morning, the president inferred from a Google trend that people are trying to retract their votes for Biden — and encouraged people to change their ballots.

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“Strongly Trending (Google) since immediately after the second debate is CAN I CHANGE MY VOTE? This refers changing it to me. The answer in most states is YES. Go do it. Most important Election of your life!” Trump tweeted out on early Tuesday. This comes after a record-setting numbers of early votes have already been cast, with more than 60 million people who have already turned in their ballots before November 3. According to Google Trends, searches for "can I change my vote after voting" have gone up by 500 percent in the last day alone in America. So let's clear this up: can you ever change your vote?

Well, it's technically possible in a few states to submit another ballot if you voted absentee or by mail. "In some states, you can submit your ballot, have a change of heart and, and submit a new ballot,” Matthew Weil, the director of the Election Project at the Bipartisan Policy Center told Newsy earlier this year. According to CNN, states where it’s possible to change your vote include New York, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Mississippi. However, most states do not allow people to alter their vote after casting their ballots. States including Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, and Arizona have strict policies that outline the ability to vote only once. 

In states where voters can flip their decision before Election Day is over, voting laws explain that those who have already cast absentee ballots must show up to their polling place on Election Day to have their prior vote nullified. Then, they’re able to re-vote in-person in order to have only their new vote count.

In New York, for example, those who voted absentee but wish to change their vote can do so. “The Election Law recognizes that plans change,” explains the New York Board of Elections. “Even if you request or cast and return an absentee ballot, you may still go to the polls and vote in person.” There, if the voter comes to the poll site on Election Day or during early voting to vote in-person, the absentee ballot must be set aside and not counted. Similarly, in Pennsylvania, you can bring your mail-in or absentee ballot with you to a polling place to have it be voided so that you can re-vote on November 3.

However, for those who have already waited in line to vote early in-person, there’s no second chance available anywhere. So the short and sweet answer is that most probably you won't be able to change your vote. And also, the president shouldn't be putting out false information without any merit, though that's a whole other issue, I guess.

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