Everything Teens Need to Know About Voting in 2022

Are You Registered to Vote?

In the United States, about 60% of eligible voters actually vote in presidential elections. For midterm elections, like the one coming up on November 8, the turnout is closer to 40%. Michigan tends to have higher rates than the national average, where nearly 74% of eligible voters participated in the 2020 election and almost 58% participated in 2018. Still, most other democracies in the world boast regular turnout rates between 70 and 90 percent.

A democracy, a government that’s designed to be run with active participation from its citizens, will work best when citizens are actively involved. We here at the Canton Public Library love to support an informed electorate and foster a healthy democracy, and strongly urge you to register to vote if you are eligible.

Sometimes you might feel frustrated by certain decisions the government might make, or you might not feel well represented by your elected officials. Short of running for office yourself, voting and participating in local elections is the best way to make your voice heard and really create change in your community. If you are a United States citizen, will be at least 18 years old by election day, and have lived in Michigan for at least 30 days, it is your right and privilege to be able to register to vote and participate in government.

What to Know in 2022

Not sure if you are registered to vote? You can visit the Michigan Secretary of State website to check your registration. Michigan offers same-day voter registration if you visit your city or township clerk’s office before 8:00 PM on election day. Of course, it’s better to get it taken care of before then to ensure there won’t be any hiccups when you go to cast your ballot. 

In Michigan, in addition to voting for U.S. House Representatives, we will also be voting for State Senators and State House Representatives. Due to redistricting following the 2020 census, there is potential for a major shift in the balance of power both locally and nationally. We will also be voting for Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State and more, including two seats on the State Board of Education.

Helpful Links

  • Find in-depth information about what will be on the ballot
  • Online voter registration is available in Michigan with proper documentation.
  • Heading away to college or unable to get to the polls for another reason? Apply online for an absentee ballot to ensure that your voice is heard. 
  • There are new voting districts this year. Find your precinct or polling location on the Canton Township precinct map
  • Learn about being an election worker (16 and 17-year-olds are eligible)
  • Vote 411 provides additional information about voting

Important Dates

  • July 18 – Deadline to register to vote online for the Primary Election (in-person registration is still available)
  • July 29 – Last day to request an absentee ballot for the Primary Election
  • August 2 – Statewide Primary Election
  • October 18 – Deadline to register to vote online for the General Election (in-person registration is still available)
  • November 4 – Last day to request an absentee ballot for the General Election
  • November 8 – Statewide General Election

There have been a lot of volatile issues in the news lately. How these issues will be decided in the future heavily depends on the outcome of this upcoming election. Regardless of the details surrounding your personal political beliefs, if you have strong feelings about these issues, you owe it to yourself and your community to vote.