Thursday, July 25

How to Vote in the Mexican Elections From Abroad

Two women will face off for Mexico’s highest office in what is set to be a historic election this spring.

Mexicans will choose their first female president on June 2, and they will also vote to renew all 500 deputies for the lower chamber of Congress and the 128 members of the Senate. At the same time, 30 of the country’s 32 states will be holding elections — with 19,000 state and local offices up for grabs.

This is the first national election in which Mexico will allow residents living abroad to vote in person. More than 12 million citizens live outside the country, 97 percent of them in the United States, according to the Institute of Mexicans Abroad. But in order to vote, those citizens must first register by Feb. 20.

Here’s what you need to do now to be eligible to cast a ballot in June.

Mexicans who are 18 years old and older, have a valid voting ID and are registered to participate in the process can vote. Those who will be 18 years old by Election Day can also register to vote.

To exercise their right, all eligible citizens are required to have a valid voting ID, often simply called an “I.N.E.,” after the initials of the National Electoral Institute, the Mexican voting authority.

Eligible voters can walk into consulates without prior appointments to request their IDs. The deadline to request an ID is Feb. 20.

Voters must bring a valid form of photo identification (such as a passport or an expired voting ID), a recent document that proves their place of residence and shows proof of nationality (it is now possible to get a valid birth certificate online.) Here’s a checklist of the necessary documents.

According to the Mexican authorities, the ID will be mailed directly to your address in three to five weeks.

If you already have a voting ID, you can make sure it is still valid by checking on this webpage.

You should go to the government’s registration website and follow the instructions there. People with dual nationality are eligible to vote if they have their ID and if it is listed as valid.

Feb. 20 is the cutoff date for voters abroad to register, according to the National Electoral Institute, which has a website with instructions both in Spanish and English.

This year, people outside the country can vote in one of three ways:

As of Feb. 8, nearly 1.5 million people were registered to vote abroad and 630,513 had the proper identification needed to participate in the process, according to the National Electoral Institute.

There will be 20 voting stations in consulates across the country: Atlanta; Chicago; Dallas; Fresno, Calif.; Houston; Los Angeles; New Brunswick, N.J.; New York; Oklahoma City; Orlando, Fla.; Phoenix; Raleigh, North Carolina; Sacramento; San Bernardino, Calif.; San Diego; San Francisco; San Jose, Calif.; Santa Ana, Calif.; Seattle; and Washington. Check with your local consulate to find out more.

Officially, candidates are allowed to start campaigning on March 1 and must finish three days before the elections.

Voters who register to vote by mail will receive their voting packet, along with their ballot, in the first week of May. For mail-in ballots to be valid, the voting authority should receive them by June 1. Postage is prepaid and will be included with the voting packet.

Voters who register to participate online and are approved to do so will be sent an email by May 3 with a username, password and instructions on how to cast their electronic ballot.

There will be three presidential debates, on April 7, April 28 and May 19, at 8 p.m. local time.

In-person voting will happen on June 2 at official voting sites.