All the dates you need to know this election season

Fall Guide 2016

A guide to all the dates you need to know this election season
"Flag," by Jasper Johns; photo via Unsplash

As the general election on Tuesday, Nov. 8, inches closer (it's 41 days away), it seems like these days, Americans can't agree on anything or anyone, especially regarding who should be the 45th president. But whether you're a fan of Hillary Clinton, Jill Stein, Gary Johnson, Donald Trump or somebody else, we can all agree on one thing: This election is extremely important, and it's essential for everyone to have a say in who becomes the next leader of the free world.

Voters in the Sunshine State are especially crucial, and though the rest of the country might think we're a little kooky, the prevalent thought among most politicos is "As Florida goes, so goes the nation." Residents of Central Florida, known to political analysts as the "swing area of the swing state," could be the deciding factor in who gets Florida's 29 electoral votes, which is a sizable chunk of the required 270.

Aside from the presidential race, Florida's 2016 ballot will also need decisions from voters on the U.S. Senate race, medical marijuana and a utility-backed solar amendment.

Before you get out there and vote on Nov. 8, remember to bring a form of identification and check your voting location before you leave your house. Polls are open on Election Day from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Voters already waiting in line by 7 p.m. will have the opportunity to cast a ballot, no matter how long it takes. Happy voting!

Oct. 4

Vice Presidential Debate Vice presidential picks Tim Kaine and Mike Pence duke it out in a proxy debate for presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump at Longwood University in Virginia with Elaine Quijano from CBS News as a moderator. Watch it on national television news channels or online at 9 p.m.;

Oct. 9

Presidential Debate Clinton and Trump answer questions at a town hall meeting moderated by ABC's Martha Raddatz and CNN's Anderson Cooper at Washington University in Missouri. Watch it on national television news channels or online at 9 p.m.;

Oct. 11

Last Day to Register Orange County voters can register at the Orange County Supervisor of Elections Office, or print an online application and mail it to PO Box 562001, Orlando, FL 32856-2001. You can also register at drivers license offices, public libraries, centers for independent living, WIC offices and Florida DCF offices. Orange County Supervisor of Elections, 119 W. Kaley St.; free;

Oct. 17

Senate Debate Republican incumbent U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and his Democratic challenger U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy battle it out in their first debate at the University of Central Florida. The debate is being sponsored by WFTV 9, ABC News, Politico Florida and Cox Media Group. 7 p.m.; University of Central Florida, 4000 Central Florida Blvd.; free;

Oct. 19

Presidential Debate In their final head-to-head, Clinton and Trump debate issues posed by Fox News' Chris Wallace at the University of Las Vegas in Nevada. Watch it on national television news channels or online at 9 p.m.;

Oct. 24-Nov. 6

Early Voting Early voting begins and continues daily. 8 a.m.-8 p.m.; multiple locations;

Oct. 25

League of Women Voters Showcase & Orientation Get information about the League and different committees. Open to men and women, and current and new members. Refreshments provided. 6:30-9 p.m.; Winter Park Community Center, 721 New England Ave., Winter Park; free; 407-608-2300;

Oct. 26

Senate Debate 7-9 p.m., Rubio and Murphy reunite for their second and final debate at Broward College in Davie. The debate is sponsored by Leadership Florida and the Florida Press Association.

Nov. 2

Last Day to Request Vote-By-Mail 5 p.m.;

Nov. 6

Last Day for Early Voting 8 a.m.-8 p.m.; multiple locations;

Nov. 8

Election Day Voters in line by 7 p.m. can cast a ballot. No excuses. Get out there if you didn't cast an absentee ballot. 7 a.m.-7 p.m.; multiple locations;


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