Vote now! 5 excellent election guides

Politics, Technology, Tips & how-to

Voting is already underway in most states, with November 4th just around the corner. Are you prepping for your trip to the ballot box or filling out an absentee ballot at home? We’ve put together a list of our favorite election guides and apps of the midterm season, whether you’re looking for a breakdown of key issues, advice on which local candidate to support, or just want to track the action.

  1. for politicians: Answer a few questions about your stance on issues like guns, immigration, reproductive rights, the economy or energy and Vote Smart’s VoteEasy tool will tell you which candidate agrees with you on the most issues. They also have a Political Galaxy tool that gives you information on politicians’ votes, speeches, issue positions, even campaign gift numbers.
  2. Just the (very important) basics: There is a lot of information out there but the Skimm’s guide to the 2014 midterm elections includes just the highlights, in true Skimm fashion. Skim the guide for the top issues at stake this election cycle, plus a list of states where you really need to vote this year (of course, everyone should vote!).
  3. Go local: Most newspaper editorial boards offer up their recommendations on which candidates and ballot measures to support. The Seattle Times, Avvo’s local paper, shares their guide here.
  4. Who gets to vote: Frontline’s Ballot Watch app tracks the changes to voting laws around the country, showing which states have made it harder or easier to vote. You can look up your state’s stance on early voting, voter IDs, felons and absentee ballots, or take a look at the nation as a whole. The Guardian has an info-packed interactive map too.
  5. Head to the races: The media is full of predictions on who will win control of the senate and we’re not immune to horserace-fever. The New York Times has some of our favorite senate race tracking graphics, including how the Democrats’ and Republicans’ chances have changed over time. You can get in on the prediction hype by building your own forecast here.

Did you find any helpful guides or apps that we missed? Let us know in the comments!