What you need to know before you vote Tuesday

If you’re an Illinois resident and want to help decide the occupant of the Oval Office for the next four years, Tuesday is your last chance to vote in the state’s primary election.

But the presidency isn’t the only office that will be on ballots in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will counties. Races to determine the Democratic and Republican nominees for judicial posts, county board seats, countywide positions and various state and federal offices will be settled, too, as will the fates of a variety of public questions.

Here are answers to questions you may have on Election Day:

Can I vote?

Only if you’re registered to do so.

Can I still register?

Yes. New voters can register on Election Day at designated polling places. Bring two forms of valid identification, including a piece of mail that shows a current address.

Voters without proper identification can cast provisional ballots, but they have to produce the proper IDs to their election authority within seven days.

To register to vote in Illinois, a person must be a U.S. citizen, a resident of an Illinois precinct for at least 30 days before Election Day, and at least 18 years old by Election Day. People who are 17 may vote in a primary if they will be 18 at the next general election.

Where do I vote?

Find your polling place and more in suburban Cook County at, in DuPage County at, in Kane County at, in Lake County at, in McHenry County at and in Will County at If you live in DuPage or Kane counties, you can vote in any polling place, not just the one for your precinct.

Do I need to bring ID?

In most cases, no. But first-time voters who registered by mail and did not submit their driver’s license number, state ID number, last four digits of their Social Security number, or other form of identification must present ID showing their name and address before voting, according to

What races will be on my ballot?

That’ll vary from community to community. Would-be judges, county board members, county officials, state representatives, state senators and congressional representatives are among the people running for office in 2024 — not to mention presidential candidates, delegates to the presidential nominating conventions and partisan precinct representatives.

You may find referendums on your ballot, too, covering sales tax increases, school construction plans and more.

I voted early but want to change my votes. Can I do that?

Sorry, no.

Can I still return a vote-by-mail ballot?

You can return your ballot through the mail if it is postmarked by Tuesday, or you can bring it to your polling place or a secure drop box.

I received a ballot by mail but I want to vote in person Tuesday instead. Can I do that?

Yes. Bring the ballot to a polling place and surrender it to election judges. If you forget or have misplaced your mail-in ballot, you can fill out a provisional ballot, which won't be counted until two weeks after the election.

Remember: Voting by mail and in person in the same election is a felony.

Can I vote for Republican and Democratic candidates?

No, in Illinois you can only vote in one party’s primary per election. But you can switch parties every two years if desired.

Selections in a primary election do not mandate choices in future elections. In other words, voting for candidate John Doe in a primary doesn’t mean you have to vote for him in the general election.

Do I need to pick a party to vote in a referendum?

No. You can request a nonpartisan ballot that only contains referendum questions.

Can I bring news articles, notes or guides with me when I vote?


Who should I call if I suspect voter fraud or intimidation at a polling place or other issues?

Voters can reports problems to the attorney general’s office at (866) 536-3496. They can also call (866) 687-8683, a hotline staffed by the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. A Spanish/English line is available at (888) 839-8682.

Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul urged voters to call his office if they encounter suspected improper or illegal activity. Chicago and northern Illinois voters can call (866) 536-3496.

Some counties have hotlines for election problems, too. For example, the DuPage County state’s attorney’s election hotline is (630) 407-8118.

Where can I find election results?

Visit or county clerk websites for more localized information.

· Daily Herald staff writers David Oberhelman, Susan Sarkauskas and Katlyn Smith contributed to this report.

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