Mail-in ballot applications in PA near 750K; today marks deadline to register to vote

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Nearly 750,000 Pennsylvanians have applied for mail-in ballots for the May primary.

Acting Secretary of State Veronica Degraffenreid announced Monday that more than 741,500 Pennsylvanians have applied for mail ballots for the May 18 municipal primary election.

“This impressive number shows the popularity of no-excuse mail voting in the commonwealth,” Secretary Degraffenreid said. “Pennsylvanians have enthusiastically embraced this secure, convenient and accessible voting option.”

To date, 698,280 registered Pennsylvania voters have applied for a mail-in ballot and 43,602 voters have applied for an absentee ballot.

Bipartisan Act 77, enacted in late 2019, made no-excuse mail-in voting possible for the first time in Pennsylvania for the 2020 presidential primary.

Today, Monday, May 3rd is the last day to register to vote in the May 18 primary. Applicants using the online voter registration system must complete and submit their application by 11:59 p.m. tonight. Traditional paper voter registration forms must be received in county voter registration offices by close of business today.

The deadline to apply for a mail-in ballot for the May 18 primary election 5 p.m. on May 11. You can apply for a mail ballot through your county election board.

Voters who have not voted by mail ballot can vote in person at their polling place on Election Day. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on May 18.

On May 18, voters who are registered as Republican or Democrat will choose their parties’ nominees for seats on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, Superior Court, Commonwealth Court, county Common Pleas Courts, and Philadelphia Municipal Court.

Also on the party ballots will be a wide variety of county, school board, and local seats such as mayor, city or borough council member, township commissioner or supervisor, magisterial district judges, and precinct election officials.

All registered voters, regardless of party affiliation, will be eligible to vote on four ballot questions. Three of the questions are proposed constitutional amendments, and the fourth question is a referendum on making municipal fire departments or companies with paid personnel and emergency medical services companies eligible for an existing state loan program. 

In addition, all registered voters in the following four districts, regardless of party affiliation, will be voting in special elections to fill vacancies:

  • 22nd State Senate District (Lackawanna County and parts of Luzerne and Monroe counties)
  • 48th State Senate District (Lebanon County and parts of Dauphin and York counties)
  • 59th State House District (parts of Somerset and Westmoreland counties)
  • 60th State House District (parts of Armstrong, Butler, and Indiana counties)

For more information on voting and elections, call the Department of State’s toll-free hotline at 1-877-VOTESPA (1-877-868-3772) or visit  

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