Terre Haute, Indiana

Voters are expected in coming weeks to go to the polls in unprecedented numbers, a tribute to the importance of this election season. Not only are there compelling choices to be made in the presidential race, ballots are loaded with contested races on the state and local levels as well. The precarious state of the U.S. economy and financial markets also hangs in the balance.

It’s hard to imagine, considering the state of American politics in this turbulent year, that eligible citizens may inadvertently let this voting opportunity slip away because of a failure to register. But it would be wise for anyone who intends to vote to make sure they are registered if they have any doubts.

Monday is the deadline in Indiana for registering to vote in the Nov. 4 general election. It is also the deadline to transfer your registration if you have changed residences.

In Vigo County, to register or change your registration, you must visit the Vigo County Voter Registration Office on the second floor of the courthouse. In Sullivan, Greene, Clay, Parke or Vermillion counties, the county clerk’s office handles voter registration.

We usually take the opportunity at this critical time on the election calendar to rail about Indiana’s unfriendly voting laws, especially the early registration deadline. We won’t waste the chance, of course, but will be a bit more abbreviated in making our point this year.

It makes absolutely no sense to cut off voter registration a full month before Election Day. The early deadline, one of the earliest in the nation, does nothing to secure the voting process and does plenty to suppress voter turnout. It may be less of a problem this year because of the intensity of the political season. But this is an issue Indiana should address in coming years.

Because of the landmark nature of the upcoming election, it may not take much to motivate voters. The mood of the electorate seems to indicate the vast majority of people sense the importance of the impending vote.

First things first, however. Before you can vote, you must be registered. Take a few moments before Monday to make sure you are properly on the rolls.

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