Secretary of State Tom Schedler is encouraging all Louisianians eligible to vote in the March 5th Presidential Preference Primary (PPP) to consider voting early. Early voting begins this SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 20TH and continues through SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 27TH from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, excluding Sunday, February 21st.

The PPP allows electors of each political party in the state (with 40,000 or more registered members) to express their preference for a person to be the nominee for president of the United States. The Democratic Party and the Republican Party will also have their state central committee and parish executive committee elections. In Louisiana, the PPP and the state and local party elections are the only closed elections held statewide meaning voters can only cast ballots for a candidate affiliated with the party in which the voter is registered. In other words, only Democrats can vote for Democrats, and Republicans can vote for Republicans.

However, in 24 parishes statewide, ALL VOTERS, no matter party, will be casting ballots in local elections as well. Those parishes include: Acadia, Beauregard, Caddo, Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Evangeline, Iberville, Jackson, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Red River, St. Helena, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa and West Baton Rouge.

“This is an election where voters should absolutely check to see what’s on their ballot before they go vote,” said Secretary of State Tom Schedler. “Louisiana has a large number or unaffiliated or no party voters who aren’t eligible to participate in the PPP, but SHOULD VOTE in any local elections for their area. Early voting is a convenient way to get your ballot cast ahead of time and is typically quick and easy.”

Voters should utilize Louisiana’s award winning smartphone application, GeauxVote Mobile, to find out where to vote, what’s on their ballot and their voting districts. Citizens who want to vote early may do so in person at their parish Registrar of Voters’ Office or at other designated locations. For a complete listing of early voting locations, visit https://voterportal.sos.la.gov/EarlyVoting.