You may be aware of Minnesota’s new “no excuses” absentee voting law that allows you to vote in person during regular business hours as many as 46 days before the election. But most people are not aware of a provision of the law that allows you to vote in person on the Saturday before the election. And in case you’re not aware of it, Minnesota’s primary election is Tuesday, August 9. So you can can cast an in-person absentee ballot this Saturday, August 6.
The law requires each county’s election office to be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. so you can vote. Saturday voting is even more convenient in 12 of Minnesota’s more populous counties where there are multiple offices open — many of them at city halls.
Counties with multiple voting locations are Anoka, Cass, Dakota, Goodhue, Hennepin, McLeod, Ramsey, Saint Louis, Sterns, Wabasha, Washington and Wright counties. Click here for the exact locations.
In-person absentee voting is very much like voting on election day. You fill out your ballot, insert it into the machine and it is recorded right on the spot. You can find out what is on your primary ballot by clicking here and entering your zip code and address.
Statewide race on primary ballot
No matter where you live in Minnesota there is a contested primary race on the ballot. Three people are running for a Minnesota Supreme Court seat. Justice Natalie Hudson is a recent appointee standing for election to a full six-year term. She is being challenged by attorneys Michelle L. MacDonald and Craig Foss. A recent poll of the members of the Minnesota State Bar Association showed an overwhelming preference for Justice Hudson over her challengers.
MacDonald’s name may be familiar to voters. She ran for Minnesota Supreme Court in 2014 with the endorsement of the Republican party. (The Minnesota DFL does not endorse candidates for non-partisan court races.) MacDonald was endorsed after giving a speech where she held a bible over her head and said it was impossible to govern “without God and the bible”.
Republicans then blocked her from appearing at their state fair booth after it was revealed she was facing a DWI charge. She filed a complaint against the party and lost in court and also was convicted of obstructing justice for refusing to take a breathalyzer test.
This year Republicans opted not to endorse MacDonald or anyone else for the Supreme Court race.