In what is proving to be one of the most closely run election campaigns in the history of the US presidential elections, American expatriates throughout the world are being reminded that their vote does count.
With between 3 and 6 million voters residing outside of the United States, campaigners are working tirelessly to ensure that those who are entitled to vote in the forthcoming presidential elections register to vote and request an absentee ballot before the forthcoming deadlines, which vary by state. To find out the deadline for your state, see the overseas vote foundation general election deadline chart.
What is clear this year is that American expatriates may make a big difference, just like they did in Florida 2000, when overseas voter’s decisions seems to swing the closely-fought election in favor of George W. Bush.
However, according to The New York Time, overseas voters are less than enthusiastic about participating in this year’s presidential race. Speaking to the newspaper, Ms. Wheeler of Democrats Abroad-Toulouse commented: “I don’t think it’s any secret that the enthusiasm of 2008 is not being replicated in 2012.” However, she attributed this in part to what she called an “obstructionist G.O.P.”
Also speaking in the newspaper, Peter R. Dahlen, an attorney in Stockholm and former president of the American Club of Sweden, said that there was “decidedly less enthusiasm than in 2008 or even 2004,” although he did add that “President Obama is still the preferred candidate, even among many Republicans here.”
U.S. citizens living abroad can register to vote and request an absentee ballot at votefromabroad.org. Some states require absentee voters to register for November’s presidential election by early October.
For a full guide to voting in the US elections, see our guide to voting in the US elections while abroad.