Election Law

If you cast a write-in vote for president, will it count? State laws differ

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Polling booths.

Thinking of casting a write-in vote for president? It may not be counted.

You can write in anyone on the ballot in 10 states and Washington, D.C., the Washington Post reports. But you will face more hurdles if you want your write-in to count in other states.

Eight states don’t even have a line for write-ins, according to the article. Thirty-two states won’t count write-ins unless a candidate is registered with the state before the election.

The jurisdictions allowing write-ins for anyone are: Alabama, the District of Columbia, Iowa, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wyoming.

The states that don’t allow write-ins are: Arkansas, Hawaii, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina and South Dakota.

There are additional restrictions in some states, including some of those that allow write-ins for anyone. In Mississippi, for example, write-ins won’t be considered unless a candidate on the ballot dies, resigns, withdraws or is removed from the ballot. Some states won’t allow a write-in to win unless additional paperwork is filed after the election.

And in some states, preciseness counts. Nicknames and initials may not be allowed.

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