Federal & state elections on the ballot: US Senator, 18 US House members, and State Senate and House members
The Illinois Board of Elections, part of the Secretary of State, oversees all Illinois elections.
Center for Illinois Politics , – June 5, 2022
For the first time in more than half a century, Illinois voters this fall will be electing Supreme Court justices from redrawn judicial districts, part of an overall trend that has seen the high court seats become increasingly the object of high-stakes politics.
“Things are a little less sleepy in the court races than they once were,” said Chris Mooney, W. Russell Arrington Professor of State Politics at University of Illinois Chicago. “We’ve got two seats up this term, and redistricting, and we had one guy ousted last go on a (failed) retention vote.”
Illinois politics being what they are, all of those factors are interrelated. The two Supreme Court seats up for grabs beginning with the June 28 primary are being chosen in the new 2nd and 3rd Judicial Districts made up of the counties surrounding Chicago and Cook County, plus a handful more to the immediate west and south.
WISU Public Radio, – November 5, 2021
A three-judge federal court panel on Friday set the week of Dec. 6 as the time it will hear three consolidated cases challenging the new legislative district maps that were drawn by Democrats and signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker earlier this year.
During a status conference held by teleconference Friday, U.S. District Judge Robert M. Dow Jr., who presides over the panel, said that while not all of the logistics have been worked out, the hearing will most likely be held in-person in the ceremonial courtroom of the Dirksen Federal Building in Chicago.
State lawmakers approved the new maps during a special session in August following the delayed release of detailed 2020 U.S Census data. Pritzker signed them into law Sept. 24.
The maps establish the boundaries for all 118 districts in the Illinois House and 59 districts in the state Senate. But three groups of plaintiffs are suing in federal court arguing that the redistricting plan violates both the U.S. Constitution and the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Each of the lawsuits claims that the new maps break up concentrated areas of minority voters who tend to vote as a bloc, thus depriving them of their right to elect candidates of their choice.
2329 S. MacArthur Blvd.
Springfield, IL 62704
100 W. Randolph, Suite 14-100
Chicago, IL 60601
Registering to Vote
Who can register
To register in Illinois you must:
- be a citizen of the United States
- be a resident of Illinois and of your election precinct at least 30 days before the next election
- be at least 18 years old on or before the next election
- not be in jail for a felony conviction (but you can vote if you have completed your sentence)
- not claim the right to vote anywhere else
How to register
- Use our Register to Vote form below to fill out the National Voter Registration Form.
- Sign and date your form. This is very important!
- Mail or hand-deliver your completed form to the address we provide.
- Make sure you register before the voter registration deadline.
Election Day registration
You can also register in person (and vote) at your local elections office during the “grace period.” The grace period starts 27 days before Election Day and ends on Election Day. Grace Period Voting does NOT take place at your regular polling place. Grace Period Voting almost always happens at your Local Election Office. Contact your Local Election Office for more information.
Voting Rights restoration
If you have been convicted of a felony and have questions about whether you can register to vote, visit Restore Your Vote to determine your eligibility.
Registration Status (form)
New Registration (form)
Voting as a Student
Overseas and Military Voting
You are a Military or Overseas voter if you are in uniformed services, living overseas OR a spouse or dependent of a uniformed services voter. To get registered and vote, you can utilize Overseas Vote Foundation.
If you have additional questions about elections and voting overseas you can use our state specific elections official directory or contact the Overseas Vote Foundation.
Voting with Disabilities
If you are a disabled voter you may request the opportunity to register at home and have registration materials brought to you. You may also request to register to vote by mail.If you are permanently physically disabled, in a nursing home or in a hospital, you may also be eligible for absentee voting.
The Help America Vote Act requires that election authorities have voting equipment in place for voters with disabilities to vote privately and independently, and Illinois is no exception. Additionally, there are options for a seated voting booth, voting assistance from a friend, relative, or two election judges (one from each party), and curbside voting.
Language assistance is also available where required under amendments to the Federal Voting Act of 1992.
For more information on the provisions available for disabled voters, please contact your local election authority.
For more information, you can utilize the American Association of People With Disabilities (AAPD) resource.
Early voting is available to all voters beginning 40 days before an election and ends the day before the election. Locations and hours for early voting are determined by each election authority.
For more information about early voting locations, check our your state’s resource.
Vote by Mail (Absentee)
Absentee ballot rules
Any registered Illinois voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.
How to get Absentee ballot
- Use our Absentee Ballot form below to prepare your application.
- Sign and date the form. This is very important!
- Return your completed application to your Local Election Office as soon as possible. We’ll provide the mailing address for you.
- All Local Election Offices will accept mailed or hand-delivered forms. If it’s close to the deadline, call and see if your Local Election Office will let you fax or email the application.
- Make sure your application is received by the deadline. Your application must actually arrive by this time — simply being postmarked by the deadline is insufficient.
- Please contact your Local Election Office if you have any further questions about the exact process.
What to do next
- Once you receive the ballot, carefully read and follow the instructions.
- Sign and date where indicated.
- Mail your voted ballot back to the address indicated on the return envelope.
- Your voted ballot must arrive by the deadline or it will not be counted.
Absentee ballot application deadline
- In Person: 1 day before Election Day.
- By Mail: 5 days before Election Day.
Absentee ballot submission deadline
Postmarked by Election Day and received by 14 days after Election Day.
Absentee Ballot (form)
Elections Alert (Form)
Polling Place Locator
If you have further questions on your polling place location, please contact your county clerk.
Polling Place Hours
The polls are open from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm.
Poll Worker Information
In order to be a poll worker in Illinois:
- You must be registered to vote in Illinois
- You must be at least 18 years of age
- Political affiliation required
- Term requirement of 2 years
- You will be entitled to compensation
- You must be a resident of the precinct for the 30 days prior to the election
- You must complete required training
- Students with citizenship who are 17 years old may work with written permission from a parent or guardian and school principal and must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0
To sign up, contact your local board of elections.
Board of Elections
- Adoption of rules and regulations to clarify and improve the election process in Illinois.
- Supervision, inspection and review of all election and registration processes in the state.
- Preparation and distribution of uniform manuals of instruction and other materials to election authorities.
- Preparation and circulation of canvasses of primary and general election returns filed with the Board.
- Determination of validity and receipt of nominating petitions and certificates of nominations.
- Dissemination of information and counsel on elections.
- Investigations and hearings of election complaints and problems.
- Recommendations of new legislation and evaluation of pending legislation to the Election Laws Commission and the Illinois General Assembly.
- Approval of voting machines and devices for use in the state.
- Development and administration of education programs for election authorities, candidates and the general public.
- Determination of validity of petitions submitted by popular initiative for constitutional amendment.
- Certification of ballot forms for constitutional amendments and other statewide referenda.
- Proclamation of election results.
- Administration of Campaign Financing Act.
Back Row L to R:
William J. Cadigan
Katherine S. O’Brien
Laura K. Donahue
Casandra B. Watson
William R. Haine
Front Row L to R:
Ian K. Linnabary, Vice Chair
Charles W. Scholz, Chair
William M. McGuffage