Act now to vote in the Nov. 8 General Election!

(Courtesy graphic)

(Courtesy graphic)

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany --

With the 2016 U.S. General Election slated for Nov. 8, Spangdahlem Air Base Airmen, civilians and their families of voting age are encouraged to act now to ensure they are registered to vote.

“Voting is something we all are asked to do from time to time, whether it be to decide on a holiday party theme, choose the best candidate to head up the booster club, or even when you and your friends cannot make up your minds on where to go for lunch,”  said Staff Sgt. Matthew Owens, installation voting assistance officer and 52nd Logistics Readiness Squadron vehicle maintenance support section craftsman. “Voting has been said to be the cornerstone of democracy and without it, the voice of the people will not be heard. This year, we have the opportunity to cast our vote for the most important thing we as Americans can vote for: the next President of the United States.”

Airmen can contact their voting assistance representatives or log-on to the Federal Voting Assistance Program website for information on how to register to vote.

“Exercise your constitutional right to cast a ballot,”  Owens said. “Voting assistance personnel can help make sure you have your say in who is at the helm of this great vessel that we call AMERICA!”

If you'd like to vote in the upcoming election, you need to register before your State's deadline - and many States' deadlines are fast approaching!  In fact, there are 23 States with registration deadlines before next Friday, October 14.  Find your specific deadline by clicking on your State here. If you haven't registered to vote yet this year, get started now at FVAP.gov before you miss the deadline.

You can register to vote and request your ballot with one form.  Complete the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) using the FPCA online assistant, or fill out the PDF or pick up a hardcopy version from your Voting Assistance Officer or nearest U.S. Embassy or Consular Office.  Be sure to double-check your contact information is accurate in case your election office needs to reach you.  If you have questions about your registration or ballot status, contact your election office.  Find contact info here.

Already received your requested ballot? Vote and return your ballot right away! Mail delivery times vary; it's especially important for you to know how long it takes mail to travel as ballot return deadlines approach.  You can find the Military Postal Service Agency's (MPSA) mailing dates chart here.

Requested your ballot but haven't received it?  Don't worry, there's a backup ballot called the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) with an online assistant that provides you with the candidate lists for federal offices including your Congressional District. You may also fill out the PDF or pick up a hardcopy version from your Voting Assistance Officer or nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Track Your Ballot. The Military Postal Service Agency (MPSA) provides free expedited ballot delivery and ballot tracking for overseas military members. They will place the Label 11- DOD on your ballot envelope, which allows you to track your ballot en route to your election office at www.usps.com.

If mailing from outside the U.S., ensure there is proper postage if using a foreign mail service.  As always, you can contact your election office to ensure they received your information by sending them an email or giving them a call!

To find your State's election website for specific information on candidates, elections, contact information, and links to your local election offices, visit FVAP's contact page.

Remember - absentee ballots count.  So make sure you complete and send in your State ballot as soon as it arrives.  If you don't receive it by Oct. 8, you can use the backup Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot, also available at FVAP.gov

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For more information on FVAP or assistance with the absentee voting process, visit FVAP.gov, call FVAP at 1-800-438-VOTE or DSN 425-1584 (CONUS)/312-425-1584 (OCONUS), or email vote@fvap.gov. Remember, you also can contact your unit or installation voting assistance officers for assistance during any step of the process. Facebook.com/DoDFVAP or Twitter@FVAP.