Apr 23, 2024 - News

Pennsylvania primary voters head to the polls

Illustration of the Liberty Bell getting a crack in the shape of a checkmark.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Primary day has arrived and we've compiled a cheat sheet of resources for voters.

Why it matters: Voters will determine which candidates move on to the November election when Pennsylvania will be among a handful of critical swing states that could determine the presidency and control of Congress.

📍 What's happening: Officials start counting mail-in ballots at 7am Tuesday when polls open. Polls close at 8pm.

Zoom in: The outcomes for most competitive races will likely be known by Wednesday night, Lauren Cristella, president of the good-government watchdog Committee of Seventy, tells Axios.

How to vote: Find your polling place here.

ğŸ”Ž Be smart: Report election complaints on the state's website or call 1-877-868-3772.

  • If a drop box is full, not functioning or damaged, call (215) 686-3469 or email [email protected].

Of note: Pennsylvania has closed primaries: Only registered Democrats and Republicans can vote in their party's primary.

The intrigue: Whether Democratic primary voters cast protest votes against President Biden over his handling of the Israel-Hamas war.

Between the lines: Tuesday also marks the first day of the Jewish holiday of Passover, which could prevent some Jews from casting a ballot at the polls.

By the numbers: More than 93,300 mail-in ballots were sent to Philly primary voters, deputy city commissioner Nick Custodio tells Axios.

  • At least 44,800 of them had been returned as of last week.

What to watch: Turnout during a presidential primary has been mixed in Philly, ranging between 16%-47% since 2000, per city data.

Threat level: More than 200 mail-in or absentee ballots are at risk of getting tossed because election officials can't verify the voters' identities, per the City Commissioners' website.

  • Those voters must submit their proof of ID at the city's Board of Elections office or via email, mail, telephone or in person.

What they're saying: Cristella says today's primary will have significant consequences for the November election.

  • "The margins are so close in Congress and the state House that choosing candidates now for the fall could have an enormous impact on whether we have split control in Harrisburg [and] what the margins look like in Congress," she said.
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