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Michigan residents can now apply for absentee ballots for the Nov. 8 general election, according to an Aug. 25 press release from Jocelyn Benson, Michigan Secretary of State. 

To apply for an absentee ballot, voters can either register online here before 5 p.m. the Friday before the election, or download and print the application and return it by mail or in-person to the local city or township clerk.

“Every successful election we have held in Michigan over the last three years, voters have made it clear they want options for how and when to cast their ballot by choosing to do so absentee in record numbers,” Benson wrote in the release. “No matter what secure method they choose — whether voting by mail, local drop box or at their clerk’s office — Michiganders can be confident their vote will be counted and their voice will be heard.”  

Voters can now use a ballot-tracking tool to monitor when their local clerk receives their absentee application, when the ballot has been mailed to them and when the state receives their completed ballot. 

On the ballot this year are candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, the Michigan legislature and local and state judges. Michigan voters will also decide on candidates for the boards of the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Wayne State University, as well as ballot measures. 

Proposals must receive a specific number of signatures in order to appear on the ballot — 425,059 for a constitutional amendment and 340,047 for legislation. As of August 29, only one proposal that alters term limits and financial disclosure requirements for state lawmakers is on the ballot. Five more have submitted signatures to the Board of Canvassers for review. 

The state will begin mailing out absentee ballots by Sept. 29. All absentee ballots must be returned to a local clerk’s office by 8:00p.m. on Nov. 8; mail-in ballots must be postmarked Nov. 8 or earlier to be counted. 

Correction 8/30: This headline has been updated to clarify that only absentee ballot applications are available, not the ballots themselves.

Daily Staff Reporter Samantha Rich can be reached at