Take Action

Get Common Cause Updates

Our Campaigns


Support Our Movement

Find Your State

Splash Image

This page is continually updated as new information is received.

The past few months have been a wake up call that we absolutely must heed. The health and well-being of Marylanders is at the forefront of everyone’s minds. But we don’t have to choose between a vibrant, robust democracy and the protection of public health—we can do both at the same time.

At Common Cause Maryland, we’re working to ensure our democracy continues to function. That work includes continuing our fight to ensure every Maryland voter has access to the ballot, watchdogging our open meetings process so the public is able to oversee and participate in government decision making while remote, and encouraging every single person to be counted in the 2020 Census.


COVID-19 has led to many changes. These changes have been made to ensure Maryland voters can exercise their fundamental right to vote while also safeguarding the public’s health during this pandemic. We will continue to update this page as election details are finalized.

On July 8, 2020, Governor Hogan instructed the State Board of Elections to conduct a “normal” election. This is a shift from the primary where active eligible voters were automatically mailed ballot. For the general election, voters will be mailed ballot request application forms that must be completed and returned in order to receive a mail-in ballot. All in-person voting option will also be open during the early voting period and on Election Day.

2020 General Election

To try and slow the spread of COVID-19, all eligible active Maryland voters are encouraged to REQUEST a mail-in ballot in order to vote by mail. Mail-in ballot applications have been mailed to all voters and include a return envelope with prepaid postage. The sooner your request is received, the better. Ballots will start to go out to voters who submitted requests on September 24th. 


The Maryland voter registration deadline is Tuesday, October 13th.

  • To register to vote online by October 13th, click here.
  • To confirm your registration information is up to date, click here.
  • If you have a felony conviction, but are not currently incarcerated – you have the right to vote in this election.
    • People who are currently incarcerated (in pre-trial detention or convicted of a misdemeanor) ARE eligible to vote in elections. Visit Out for Justice’s valuemyvote.today for more information.

Please Note: If you are an eligible voter who missed the registration deadline, same-day registration is available at all in-person voting centers during the early voting period and on Election Day.


Requests for a mail-in ballot must be received by October 20th.

  • To request you mail-in ballot using the online request form, click here.
    • If you do not have a state ID, you can use a paper request form. The form is available for download in English and Spanish.
    • Mail-in ballot request forms (applications) have been mailed to all voters. If you plan on using that form to make your request, use the return envelope and mail your request in ASAP.
    • To watch a video covering how to request a mail-in ballot, click here.
  • To confirm your request for a mail-in ballot has been received, click here.

Please note: if you request your ballot be delivered to you electronically (via email), you need to able to print and provide your own return envelope and postage to submit that ballot. These ballots cannot be returned by email (your vote will not be counted). We recommend using this option only if you need to use an electronic ballot marking device.


We recommend requesting a ballot to vote in the general election. If you choose to vote in person, we encourage you to vote early.

Early voting will be available from Monday, Oct. 26th to Monday, Nov. 2nd. These locations will be open from 7am to 8pm. Voters can go to any location in their county to vote.

  • To view the list of early voting locations in your county, click here.
  • To search early voting centers by county, click here.

Don’t wait until Election Day to vote. If you must vote on Tuesday, November 3rd, you need to be on line to vote by 8pm. Go early if you can.

  • To view the list of Election Day vote centers in your county, click here.
  • To search voting locations by county, click here.

Please note: voters choosing to vote in-person should wear masks and practice social-distancing.


  • Ballots for this election will start to be mailed to voters who submitted requests on Sept. 24th.
  • When you receive your ballot, fill in the oval to the left of your candidate choice.
  • For nonpartisan candidate and ballot measure information, visit vote411
  • After voting your ballot, seal, sign and date the oath on the return envelope using a black pen.
  • We recommend returning your voted ballot using a secure drop box. For a list of locations in your county, click here.
    • To search ballot drop-off boxes by county, click here.
  • If returning your voted ballot by mail, send no later than Oct. 27th to allow a full week for delivery (avoiding any delays). No stamp is required.
  • Make sure your ballot is not rejected! Sign the return envelope and make sure your ballot is postmarked on or before November 3rd (by 8pm).
  • To track your voted ballot, click here.


Contact your local election board: full list here

If election officials can’t assist, call the nonpartisan hotline:
English: 866-OUR-VOTE
Spanish: 888-VE-Y-VOTA
Arabic: 844-YALLA-US
Asian & Pacific languages: 888-API-VOTE
American Sign Language video: 301-818-VOTE
or text OUR VOTE to 97779
You can also contact Common Cause MD directly at 443-906-0442


Maryland’s confidence in our government is more important during a time of crisis than ever. Public officials must do everything in their power to maximize the ability of the public to continue observing and participating in government proceedings, following these recommendations provided by Common Cause where possible:

  • Postpone non-priority government action until the state of emergency has ended.
  • Provide widespread public notice of scheduled government proceedings.
  • Provide public access to observe government proceedings via live and recorded video available on government websites.
  • Provide public ability to participate in government proceedings via videoconference where possible and, at a minimum, via telephone and submission of written testimony.
  • Require all members of a public body participating in a meeting or proceeding to be clearly audible and visible at all times, including to the public.
  • At the start of the meeting, require the chair to announce the names of any members of the public body participating remotely.
  • In the event audio or video coverage of a proceeding or meeting is interrupted, require the presiding official to suspend discussion until audio/video is restored.
  • Require all votes to be roll call votes.
  • At the beginning of any closed session, require all members of the public body to state that no other person is present or can hear them.
  • Record and archive all open sessions of meetings and make recordings available for later access on website.
  • For additional guidance on Open Meetings Act, see Office of the Attorney General’s FAQs.

Take Action

Election Protection 2020

Maryland voters should feel safe and supported as they cast their votes. This election year, we’re expanding our program, mobilizing volunteers to answer questions and assist voters. Sign up to learn more about the program and opportunities to volunteer.

Transparency and Public Access

We need your help watchdogging public officials – ensuring they are completely transparent in their actions and doing everything in their power to maximize the ability of the public to continue observing and participating in government proceedings. Let us know where there is an Open Meetings issue.


2020 Census

One important way we can support our neighbors today is to fill out the 2020 Census (by phone, mail, or online). Learn how you can get counted at http://www.ourvoicescount.org/

Become an Election Judge

Election judges play an important role in the election process and will help to ensure our Primary and General elections are conducted in a fair, secure, and accessible way. Apply to serve in this critical role.


Expand the Ballot Coalition Details Plans to Ensure Eligible Incarcerated Voters Can Exercise Their Right to Vote

Common Cause Maryland Urges Gov. Hogan to Reconsider Plans for November Election

Common Cause Maryland Recommends Transparency, Participation Procedures if General Assembly Returns to Session

Gov. Hogan decides Nov. 3 election plan – Common Cause responds

Gov. Hogan Urged to ‘focus on providing safe options’ for voting in Nov 3 Election

Governor urged to ‘immediately’ give SBE ‘clear direction’ for November elections

Voting Rights Groups Urge Board of Elections to Take Mitigating Actions

Advocates Urge Governor Hogan to Prioritize Funding for Voter Education

Today’s special election in Maryland CD-7 tests state’s vote by mail system

Common Cause, Free Press, PEN America urge Governor Hogan to support local journalism in Maryland

The Maryland State Board of Elections Must Provide In-Person Voting Option for Seventh  Congressional District Special Election

Common Cause Maryland Urges Local Boards of Election to make Adequate Number of Vote Centers Available for 2020 Primary Election

Additional Recommendations to the Maryland State Board of Elections, COVID-19

During COVID-19 State of Emergency, We Must Maintain Transparency and Public Access to Maryland’s Government Proceedings

Common Cause, League of Women Voters, other organizations recommend next steps for Maryland elections amid COVID-19

Common Cause, Maryland PIRG, other organizations urge General Assembly to recess

For the latest updates and information on the coronavirus in Maryland, visit the Maryland Department of Health website.

Join the movement over 1 million strong for democracy

Join us: Americans deserve open, honest, accountable government.