Decision 2024: Democracy In Action

WI Latino News

The commencement of the 2024 election season is marked by the initiation of voting in Iowa on January 15. This period encompasses the presidential primaries and caucuses across the country, extending until June.

Latinos are projected to account for 14.7% of all eligible voters in November 2024, a new high, according to a new report by the Pew Research Center. This share has steadily increased over the past two decades and is up from 13.6% in 2020. In 2000, by comparison, Hispanics made up just 7.4% of U.S. eligible voters.

Knowing the voting requirements before heading to the polls is essential, as the rules can be complex. Are you eligible to vote in the primary? Is pre-registration necessary? What kind of identification, if any, is needed? We at Wisconsin Latino News (WILN) want to help you find the answers to these questions.

Like many other states, Wisconsin has seen increased attention on its voting process due to pandemic-related adjustments and political conflicts. In the previous election, President Joe Biden secured victory over former president Donald Trump with a margin of less than 1 percent, amounting to fewer than 21,000 votes, making it one of the closest races in the country.

However, the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently invalidated the use of drop boxes for collecting absentee ballots in 2022. Additionally, a county circuit court ruling prohibited election clerks in the state from rectifying issues with absentee ballots. These decisions came at a critical time as the midterm elections approached.

According to a study conducted by the Pew Research Center, Latino voters in Wisconsin are more likely to identify as Democrats compared to Republicans. However, this does not mean they vote as a monolithic block, as their preferences can vary based on age, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. 

SUGGESTION: Latino Voters: Shaping Wisconsin’s Political Landscape

April 2 marks the 2024 presidential primary election in Wisconsin. The races on the ballot will be local elections: school board, county board and city council races around the state.

Wisconsin doesn’t have a deadline to register to vote, because you can register at your polling place on Election Day, November 5.

Important Dates:

It is important to note that the primary election has unique conditions and differs from regular elections. Participants in the nomination process will be required to mark and sign party declarations on their ballot return envelopes. State laws dictate the process of setting the date, candidate eligibility for the ballot, and how parties utilize the primary results.

While most states utilize primaries to choose their presidential nominees, nine states, including Iowa, continue to opt for caucuses as their selection method. Unlike traditional primaries, where voters privately cast their ballots, caucuses involve them gathering together to express their preferences openly.

For the upcoming election, the Democratic and Republican parties will hold caucuses in Iowa, Idaho, and Wyoming. However, only the Republican party will conduct caucuses in Alaska, Hawaii, Missouri, Nevada, North Dakota, and Utah.

Registration deadlines and requirements differ across states. In 42 states and the District of Columbia, online registration is available. Additionally, in 22 states and D.C., you can register and vote on the same day. If you choose this route, it is vital to have proof of your residence ready, such as a driver’s license or ID card. Some states may accept documents like paychecks or utility bills with your address as proof of residency. In certain states, same-day registrants may need to sign an affidavit or take an oath attesting to their eligibility and confirming that they still need to vote.

Under the “motor voter” law, states must allow individuals to register at motor vehicle offices. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, approximately one-third of all voter registration applications are submitted through motor vehicle offices annually.

The 2024 Republican National Convention is scheduled to be held July 15 to 18, at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee. After hosting the Democratic National Convention in 1996, the event will return to Chicago on August 19-22, 2024, at the United Center.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 5.


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