NEWS | Aug. 9, 2018

Absentee ballots help make your vote count

By George Ferguson, Installation Voting Officer Airman and Family Readiness Center

No matter where they are at the time, even if only recently deployed or overseas, service members and their families want their vote to count when election time rolls around, especially in their state’s primary election, as it will determine who is on the November 2018 general election ballot.

If a member of the military hasn’t established residency in their new location, but is still a registered voter at their previous posting -- or if they are deployed and won’t be able to make it to the polls at home -- an absentee ballot gives every eligible voter the opportunity to participate in the most basic right U.S. citizens have.

The Federal Voting Assistance Program is a Department of Defense organization that works to ensure Service members, their eligible family members, and overseas citizens are aware of their right to vote and have the tools and resources to successfully do so - from anywhere in the world.

As we are approaching another election cycle, including primaries currently underway in some states, FVAP has released a list of upcoming primaries or elections dates for all states within the next 90 days.



  • 2 – Tennessee
  • 4 – Virgin Islands
  • 7 – Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Washington 11 – Hawaii
  • 14 – Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, Wisconsin 21 – Alaska, Wyoming
  • 25 – Guam
  • 28 – Arizona, Florida



  • 4 - Massachusetts
  • 6 – Delaware
  • 11 – New Hampshire
  • 12 – Rhode Island



  • N/A


  • 6 – Louisiana and General Election Day


FVAP recommends that all military members and their eligible family members away from their voting jurisdiction, as well as U.S. citizens overseas, send in a Federal Post Card Application every year to ensure receipt of absentee ballots for all federal elections.  Now is the time to update your mailing address and absentee ballot request information to reflect any changes since the last general election. Find the form at

To find your state's election website for specific information on candidates, elections, contact information, and links to your local election offices, visit FVAP's contact page --

To register and request your ballots, complete the FPCA using the online assistant at You may also use the fillable PDF at or pick up a hardcopy version from your Installation Voter Assistance Office located at your installation's Airman & Family Readiness Center.

 FVAP has also released a new direct-to-voter training video which aims to increase overall awareness for active duty personnel on how to leverage its voting assistance resources for the 2018 primary and general election season.

The video serves as a step-by-step tutorial for absentee voting in the military, providing an overview of the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) absentee voting process. Sections of the video include how to use a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) to register and request an absentee ballot, what to anticipate with arrival of state ballots, and completing a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) if a requested ballot doesn't arrive.

For those looking to share this video, please visit