Your vote counts! Did you know that many recent U.S. elections have been decided by a margin smaller than the number of ballots cast by military and overseas voters? All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline.
Follow a few simple steps to make sure that you can vote in the U.S. elections:
Registering to Vote: Complete a new Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) at: http://www.fvap.gov/uploads/FVAP/Forms/fpca2013.pdf (PDF 321 KB).
The FPCA is accepted by all local election officials in all U.S. states and territories. The following website http://www.fvap.gov/citizen-voter/registration-ballots allows you to register to vote and to request absentee ballots for all regular, primary, run-off, and special elections for federal offices (President, U.S. Senate, and U.S. House of Representatives) during the course of the year it is submitted in.
You can complete the FPCA online at http://www.fvap.gov/. The online voting assistant will ask you questions specific to your state. The following website http://www.fvap.gov/ will tell you if your state allows the FPCA to be returned electronically or if you must submit a paper copy with original signature.
Receiving Your Ballot: Request Electronic Delivery! States are now required to send out ballots 45 days before a regular election for federal office (President, U.S. Senate, or U.S. House of Representatives), and states generally send out ballots at least 30 days before primary elections. No matter which state you vote in, we encourage you to ask your local election officials to deliver your blank ballots to you electronically (by email, internet download, or fax, depending on your state). Be sure to include your email address on your FPCA to take advantage of the electronic ballot delivery option. You can now also confirm your registration and ballot delivery online for most states using http://www.fvap.gov/links.
Researching the Candidates and Issues: Online Resources. Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues. Non-partisan information about candidates, their voting records, and their positions on issues are widely available and easy to obtain via numerous websites such as Project Smart Voter that can be found on http://www.votesmart.org/. You can also read national and hometown newspapers online, or search the internet to locate articles and information. For information about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP’s Voting Alerts (firstname.lastname@example.org). FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via the Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DoDFVAP and Twitter page http://twitter.com/FVAP.
Returning Your Completed Ballot: Other Options. If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials, you can do so free of charge at U.S. Embassy in Chisinau. They must be in either postage paid return envelopes or in envelopes bearing sufficient domestic U.S. postage and must also be addressed to the relevant local election officials.
Voters are allowed to bring the sealed forms and ballots themselves. The ballots are collected in a container with the proper signature in the security area of the Consular Section. The envelopes will be identified as voting materials. They will be sent through diplomatic pouch. Approximate delivery time to the United States is two weeks. Voting assistance hours are Monday and Wednesday from 2:00 to 4:00 pm and Friday from 9:00 to 11:00 am.
If it is more convenient for you, you can also return your FPCA or ballot to your local election officials via international mail or professional courier service at your own expense.
Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) website http://www.fvap.gov/. If you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact the ChisinauVoting Assistance Officer at the Consular Section contact phone number +373 22-408-300 or at VoteChisinau@state.gov .
Contact the U.S. Embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions. The Embassy is closed on Moldovan and U.S. federal holidays, for more information go to http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/snow-dismissal-procedures/federal-holidays/. Follow us on our Twitter page https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/travelgov to have travel information at your fingertips.
Americans traveling abroad should also regularly monitor the U.S. Embassy’s website and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs website at http://www.travel.state.gov/. These websites are where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information can be found.
You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
The U.S. Embassy in Chisinau is located at 103 Mateevici St., Chisinau, Moldova. If you are a U.S. citizen in need of urgent assistance, the emergency number for the U.S. Embassy is (373-22) 237-345/408-445.