Early voting allows any voter to cast a ballot in person prior to Election Day. Early in-person voting locations, times, and voting periods vary from state to state. The 33 states that have already adopted early voting have shown us that it works best when it is offered over at least two weeks, allows people to vote at night and on weekends to accommodate voters’ varied schedules and is offered at locations throughout each county to make it convenient for all voters.

States With Early Voting

Note: Oregon and washington are all vote-by-mail states with limited early voting options

Note: Oregon and washington are all vote-by-mail states with limited early voting options

Instead of voters struggling to make it to the polls on Election Day and cast their vote at crowded polling places, early voting allows them to choose the time that works best for them. Plus, early voting reduces congestion on Election Day because many voters have already cast their ballots giving election administrators more time to discover and correct errors in the voting process. 

In addition to being more convenient, early voting increases access for voters who might otherwise not be able to cast their ballots. Working people, particularly health care providers who may have to work double-shifts on Election Day that prevent them from voting, can find another time to vote that fits their hectic schedules. Seniors and citizens with disabilities who may need help to make it to polls can arrange for family or friends to take them during the early voting period.

One of the key recommendations from the President’s Commission on Election Administration, a bipartisan group of election experts, was for states to offer voters more opportunities to cast their ballot. Today, 33 states and the District of Columbia offer their voters choice through in-person early voting.

There’s no reason that all voters should have to vote on one specific day. Offering early voting in Pennsylvania improves the voting experience and would allow all citizens the opportunity to participate.