Early voting started already - here's a guide to help navigate the process

Resources on how and where to vote, who and what's on the ballot and more

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By Michael Romain


Oct. 14 was the first day of early voting in Chicago. Below, we've compiled a guide to help you navigate the ins and outs of the voting process. 

When, where and how to vote

Learn when, where and how to vote by visiting the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners website here. The website also has helpful videos that show you how to register to vote online, how to file a change of address and more.

If you want to see the early voting location nearest you on an interactive map, WTTW News has one available for you. Click here to access it.

Below is a list of early voting locations in Austin Weekly News' West Side coverage area. Early voting started Oct. 14 across Chicago:  

Ward 24

  • Herzel Elementary School, 3711 W. Douglas Blvd. 
  • Dates: Oct. 14 through Nov. 2 
  • Hours: 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday

Ward 28 

  • Westside Learning Center, 4624 W. Madison St.
  • Dates: Oct. 14 through Nov. 2 
  • Hours: 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday

Ward 29 

  • Burbank Elementary School, 2035 N. Mobile Ave.
  • Dates: Oct. 14 through Nov. 2 
  • Hours: 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday

Ward 37  

  • McNair Elementary School, 4820 W. Walton St.
  • Dates: Oct. 14 through Nov. 2 
  • Hours: 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday

Got questions? 

Read the Frequently Asked Questions page on the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners website here.  

Key candidates on the ballot

The most obvious thing on the ballot is at the top of the ticket — the race you'll see first, which is the race for President of the United States. But you may be surprised to learn that Trump and Biden aren't the only candidates you have to choose from. Here's a complete list of candidates running for President and Vice President that you can see on the ballot (in the order they'll appear):

Democratic U.S. Senator Richard J. Durbin is also running for reelection against four challengers. Click on their names below for more info:  

Perhaps the most important local race on the ballot is that for Cook County State's Attorney. Incumbent State's Attorney Kim Foxx, a Democrat, is running against Republican challenger Patrick W. 'Pat' O'Brien and Libertarian challenger Brian Dennehy. 

For more info on the candidates click their names below.

To see the above candidates' in interviews with various newspaper editorial boards, see below: 

Interview with Daily Herald 

Interview with Chicago Sun-Times

Democratic Congressman Danny K. Davis (7th) is running for reelection against Republican challenger Craig Cameron and Independent candidate Tracy Jennings. For more info on the candidates click their names below. 

Judges up for election and retention 

According to Injustice Watch, a nonpartisan nonprofit media organization, judges "Judges have the power to make decisions about guilt and innocence, to take away someone's freedom, to interpret or overturn state laws, and to correct or perpetuate injustices. Yet there are few places to get information about the people seeking to become or remain judges. This year there are two contested elections for judicial seats in suburban subcircuits and 62 judicial retention elections on the ballot."  

Earlier this month, Injustice Watch published its first guide to Cook County judicial elections. You can check it out here

The Fair Tax referendum 

Another major issue on the ballot is the Fair Tax amendment, which is a referendum to change the state's income tax from a flat tax to a progressive tax. To learn more about the basics of the Fair Tax referendum, click here. The state of Illinois has a Fair Tax Calculator that it says will allow families to show the impact of the tax on them. Click here to access it.

Helpful guides 

 If you have problems while voting, call: 1-866-687-8683 (866-OUR-VOTE). 

Email: michael@austinweeklynews.com Twitter: AustinWeeklyChi

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