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Just 7% of Overseas Voters Voted in 2016

by Andee Goldman, Regional Outreach, Israel, Overseas Vote Initiative

Approximately 7% of eligible American overseas voters returned their ballots in the 2016 General Election. That's right. Just 7%.

It's a tiny improvement over the 4% level last reported, which we also found quite disappointing

Were you one of the American voters who did not vote? Your vote was missed! According to the Federal Government’s most recent Overseas Citiizens Population Analysis (OCPA report), the “top 10” countries from which overseas voters are voting are Canada, UK, Mexico, France, Japan, Australia, Israel, Germany, Italy, and South Korea.

"Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting." Franklin D. Roosevelt

With less than 2 months remaining to vote in the U.S. Midterm Elections, now is the time to act! This election will decide the composition and balance of power within Congress. All 435 seats in the United States House of Representatives and 33 of the 100 seats in the United States Senate will be contested.

YOU are eligible to vote: if you are a US citizen, over 18 years on election day. Voting is based on where you last lived in the United States, or if born overseas where your parents last lived.

The Myth of “Secure” Blockchain Voting

by David Jefferson, Verified Voting*

Several startup companies have recently begun to promote Internet voting systems, but with a new twist – using a blockchain as the container for voted ballots transmitted over the Internet from the voter’s private device. Blockchains are a relatively new system category a little akin to a distributed database. Proponents of blockchain voting promote it as a revolutionary innovation providing strong security guarantees that enable truly secure online elections. Unfortunately, these claims are false. Blockchains do not offer any real election security at all.

Internet voting has been studied by computer security researchers for over twenty years. Cyber security experts universally agree that no technology, including blockchains, can adequately secure an online public election.

NEW! Overseas Vote "Widget"

Overseas Voter Registration and Ballot Request Widget

Offer US Citizens abroad and/or Uniformed Services members and their families the possibility to register to vote and request their directly from your website!

Here’s how to add interactive service value to your own site, specifically for overseas voters and Uniformed Services members and their families. The Overseas Vote “widget” tool can be installed in minutes and put the registration and ballot request wizard at your users’ fingertips – without leaving your website. The Overseas Vote Widget will enable your organization to increase the accessibility of voting to American citizens living, studying, working and serving abroad.

Whether you are a local election official, a study abroad program manager or an overseas citizens organization, or any kind of voter outreach or civic engagement organization, you can now impact voter turnout directly from you own website! Access to the Overseas Vote Widget is granted to approved applicants only. Request Access today!

2018 American Midterm Election — ‘Vote in Honor of Veterans’

“The soldier is the Army. No army is better than its soldiers. The Soldier is also a citizen. In fact, the highest obligation and privilege of citizenship is that of bearing arms for one’s country.”   George S. Patton Jr.

As American citizens, we have many privileges.  One is voting.  The right to vote is a fundamental aspect of American politics. To cast a ballot most states require you to register to vote by your state’s deadline.

Over the years, many states have added a program for registered voters, called VOTE IN HONOR OF A VETERAN.  A wonderful program to honor the men and women who fight for the freedom of all Americans and citizens around the world. 

Announcing the 2018 "Study Abroad & Vote! ToolKit"

American students are increasingly taking part in Study Abroad programs. During the 2015-2016 school year, the growth rate of students studying abroad was 3.8%. Of those 325,339 students, how many realized that they carried with them their right to vote?[1]

U.S. students take part in summer, semester-long, or even entire school year programs to study in countries spanning Europe and Asia. The vast majority of these young men and women are of voting age and in this time of razor-thin margins in so many races, their votes could swing entire elections. In 2016, Donald Trump won Wisconsin by just over 20,000 votes and in 2008 Barack Obama won Indiana by just under 30,000.

Discover "My Voter Account" - Your Personal Democracy App

NEW! Discover integrated news content from America's most respected non-partisan political fact-checking site, Factcheck.org.



Get your voting and election information all in one place. Your Voter Account moves with you, stays with you and informs you. It is your personal democracy app.


Create your Voter Account and begin experiencing the MVA service today! Create Voter Account

Press Releases

Michael Steele to Lead U.S. Vote Foundation

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 9, 2018 -- U.S. Vote Foundation's Board of Directors unanimously elected Michael Steele, Former Chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), as Chair of U.S. Vote Foundation (US Vote) and its Overseas Vote initiative. His appointment will strengthen the nonprofit, nonpartisan organization and support its work to advance its mission to make Every Citizen is a Voter, a reality.

“With the 2018 midterm election now underway, Mr. Steele's leadership and skill at driving engagement will positively augment our outreach efforts,” US Vote President and CEO Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat. “His breadth of communications experience and insight into the political and media establishment will help us keep our finger on the pulse during this important midterm election year.”

“This is the ideal time for me to take the reigns at US Vote and work with the organization to reach out to more voters, getting them involved in the voting process. We have the tools and services at US Vote to help every US citizen to engage in our democracy with voting as a central action,” stated Mr. Steele. "I'm truly looking forward to helping more people make their voices heard at the ballot box."

U.S. Vote Foundation Welcomes New Board Members and Interim Chair

Marcia Johnson-Blanco and Clarissa Martínez-De-Castro Join U.S. Vote Foundation Board; Michael Steele appointed as Interim Chair

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 19, 2017 - U.S. Vote Foundation (US Vote) has elected two new members to its Executive Board: Marcia Johnson-Blanco, Co-director, Voting Rights Project, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law; and Clarissa Martínez-De-Castro, Deputy Vice President, Office of Research, Advocacy, and Legislation, UnidosUS. Both new members served since May 2015 on US Vote’s Advisory Board. Michael Steele, who has served on the board since March 2016 was appointed as Interim Chair of Board.

US Vote CEO Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat said, “It is an honor to have two new members of our board with such breadth of professional expertise in the realm of voting rights and outreach to diverse communities. They bring real election and voting advocacy muscle coupled with individual talents that will serve our organization immeasurably. In addition, we are all grateful to Michael Steele for taking the lead as we mobilize for the midterms.”

U.S. Vote Foundation to Tackle a Nationwide Data Problem

New Local Elections Data Resource and API

NEW YORK, NY, January 18, 2017 – U.S. Vote Foundation’s (US Vote) twelve year investment in development of its election data and API technology will be used to address a vast and unmanaged data challenge: Local Election Dates and Deadlines. The announcement was released at the Knight-Civic Hall Symposium on Tech, Politics and the Media.

“Ask anyone if they know the date of their next local election and what it is about, or how to find out? They cannot tell you. People are not participating in the elections that direct affect the quality of their lives. We are poised to unlock this data and fix that problem,” states Susan Dzieduszycka-Suinat, US Vote’s President and CEO.

A Knight Foundation Prototype Fund grant for “Local Election Dates and Deadlines (LEDD) Data Resource and API” served to kick-start the program.

US Vote Announces 2016 Election Day Voter Experience Survey Highlights

January 16, 2017 - The 2016 Election Day Voter Experience Survey, conducted by U.S. Vote Foundation (US Vote) together with its Overseas Vote initiative from Nov 8-11, 2016, provides new insights into approximately 12,000 voters’ actual experiences of casting a ballot (or not) through six different voting methods, both domestic and overseas.

Highlights / Key Findings

Among the many new insights, certain findings stood out:

  • Satisfaction and Motivation – 76% of all respondents indicated they were satisfied or very satisfied with the voting process; and in a rating from 1 to 5, with 5 highest, overall voter motivation was 4.6%
  • Online Ballot Delivery Dominates for Overseas Voters – For the first time ever in a general election, overseas absentee voters in the 2016 election were more likely to receive their blank ballots through an electronic method (72%) than through postal mail

View Your State Voting Requirements & Election Deadlines