News & Politics

UPDATE: You Have a Couple More Days to Register to Vote in Virginia

Image via iStock.

UPDATE, 10/20: Friday is now the last day for Virginia residents to register to vote either online or in person in time for the November 8 election, thanks to a federal judge’s order that the commonwealth extend the deadline after the online-registration system crashed before the ahead of the original deadline on Monday. Judge Claude M. Hilton of the US District Court for Eastern Virginia issued the order after both state officials and civil rights organizations teamed up to push for an extension. According to CNN, the plaintiffs asked to extend voter registration through next Monday, but Hilton felt that was too much time and set the new deadline for Friday at 11:59 PM.

Online registration can be done through the website of the Virginia Department of Elections, while paper forms are available at public libraries, Department of Motor Vehicles offices, and many other state and local government offices.

Unlike the District, Virginia does not offer same-day registration on Election Day. Absentee and early voting is already underway, and runs through November 5.

The upcoming election will also be the first presidential ballot since a 2013 law signed by then-Governor Bob McDonnell requiring all Virginians voting in person to present photo identification. The law is being challenged, with the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals hearing arguments on September 22, though it is uncertain if the court will rule before Election Day. If the photo-identification law is still on the books by the election, voters will need to bring with them one of several valid forms, including driver’s licenses, US passports, student or employee identification cards, or a Virginia Voter Photo ID Card, which are distributed for free at the state’s voter registration offices.

Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.