2020 Presidential Election Guide
The 2020 Presidential Election began with Democratic Presidential debates (see below), followed by the Presidential Primary Elections (Utah’s was held on Super Tuesday – March 3. Other states will hold Presidential Primary Elections through June 16.). After the Primary Elections are over across the country, the national parties will hold their nominating conventions to select their party’s candidate for the general election on November 3.
- The 2020 Presidential Primary Elections will continue in other states through June 16th.
- The 2020 Democratic National Convention is scheduled from July 13–16
- The 2020 Republican National Convention is planned from August 24–27
- The 2020 Utah Primary Election will be held on June 30, but there will be no election for presidential candidates at this time (only for state and county officials)
- The 2020 Presidential Debates – September 29, October 15, October 22
- The 2020 Vice Presidential Debate – October 7 (IN UTAH!)
- The 2020 General Election will be held across the country on November 3
3 Ways to get ready to cast your vote in the 2020 Presidential Primaries
Voting in Utah is now done by mail. Make sure you are registered in advance to receive your mail-in ballot!
1. Register to vote
- The deadline for registering to vote by mail for the General Election is in early October. You can also register in person at your County Clerk’s office, online or by texting “VOTERISE” to 788-683. Registering takes three minutes or less!
- Update your voter registration if you have moved by clicking here.
- Spread the word to get others registered to vote!
2. Make a plan to vote
- Mark your calendar for elections on November 3 and decide how, when and where you will cast your ballot NOW to make sure you don’t miss your chance to cast your vote.
- NOTE: Due to coronavirus, election officials may recommend voting by mail rather than in person. Make plans accordingly. Mail-in ballots must be postmarked by November 2. Check vote.utah.org for ballot drop-off locations, early voting locations/hours and Election Day polling locations/hours near you.
3. Get to know the candidates
- Use this NY Times guide or links to candidate websites to help you understand the candidates.
- Watch upcoming Presidential Debates (see the debate schedule below).
When are the 2020 Presidential Primary Elections?
Presidential Primary elections are races that are held on different dates from state to state within each party, either in the form of a caucus or primary election. In 2020 some state parties have opted out of holding a primary election at all. The 2020 Election will begin as usual with the Iowa Caucus on February 3, 2020. The Democratic and Republican Primaries will be held on the same day in Utah on “Super Tuesday,” on March 3, 2020. Presidential Primaries and Caucuses in other states will be held from Feb 3 through June 16th, though a large number of states will also hold their primaries on Super Tuesday. See the Primary Election Schedule here.
Who is running? The field of candidates began with 24 Democrats and 2 Republicans and has grown and shrunk. Find out who they are. Find links to candidate websites here. Find current polling numbers here. Find out about major endorsements for the candidates here.
Who can vote? All registered voters in Utah may cast a ballot, though each voter must choose either a Democratic or Republican ballot, and may not vote in both parties’ primaries. Only voters who are affiliated as a Republican or who declare at the polls may vote in a Republican primary, should there be one. Any registered voter may cast a ballot in the Democratic primary. Be sure to register to vote at least 30 days in advance by mail or at least 7 days in advance in person, online or by text! How to register to vote.
The Commission on Presidential Debates will host three Presidential Debates.
- First presidential debate, Tuesday, September 29, 2020 – University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN
- Second presidential debate, Thursday, October 15, 2020 – University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
- Third presidential debate, Thursday, October 22, 2020 – Belmont University, Nashville, TN
Vice Presidential Debate
The Commission on Presidential Debates will host one Vice Presidential Debate right here in Utah!
- Vice Presidential Debate, October 7, 2020 – Hosted by University of Utah in Salt Lake City, UT
US Presidential Election News has a great description on how to get tickets to attend events in person. Check back for more ticket updates frequently as more debate information becomes available.
Democratic Presidential Debates
The Democratic National Convention set the rules and schedule for ten Democratic Presidential Debates held between 2019 and 2020. Use these links to out what happened in all debates in the series.
Tenth Democratic Presidential Debate (February 25, 2020 – Hosted by CBS News/Congressional Black Caucus Institute in Charleston, SC)
- CBS: 8 Top moments from the South Carolina Democratic debate
- NPR: 4 Takeaways from the South Carolina Democratic debate
Ninth Democratic Presidential Debate (February 19th, 2020 – Hosted by NBC News/MSNBC with a local newspaper in Las Vegas, NV)
- ABC: Moments that mattered from the 9th Democratic debate
- CNN: Fact checking the contentious Democratic debate
Eighth Democratic Presidential Debate (February 7th, 2020 – Hosted by ABC/WMUR-TV and Apple News at St. Anselm College in Manchester, NH)
- Washington Post: Winners and Losers from the Eighth Democratic Presidential Debate
- CNBC: Highlights from the 2020 Democratic Debate in New Hampshire
Seventh Democratic Presidential Debate (January 14th, 2020 – Hosted by CNN/Des Moines Register in Des Moines, IA)
- Newsweek: Who Won the Seventh Democratic Debate in Iowa?
- Washington Post: Fact Checking the Seventh Democratic Debate
Sixth Democratic Presidential Debate (December 19, 2019 – Hosted by PBS News Hour/Politico and also on CNN, Los Angeles, CA)
- Politico: Who won the debate and more takeaways from a fireworks filled night
- WATCH: PBS News Hour: All the key moments from the debate
Fifth Democratic Presidential Debate (November 20, 2019 – Hosted by MSNBC/Washington Post in Atlanta, GA)
- Five Thirty Eight: Won who the debate?
- Washington Post: Democratic debate highlights: Candidates discuss rights and U.S. role in the world
Fourth Democratic Presidential Debate (Oct 15, 2019 – Hosted by CNN/NY Times in Westerville, OH)
- Washington Post: What you missed while not watching last night’s Democratic presidential debate
- CNN: 7 Takeaways from the CNN/NY Times Democratic presidential debate
Third Democratic Presidential Debate (Sept 12, 2019 – Hosted by ABC/Univision in Houston, TX)
- CBS News: Democrats clash on healthcare and immigration in third debate
- NY Times: 6 Takeaways from the September Democratic Debate
Second Democratic Presidential Debates (July 30-31, 2019 – Hosted by CNN in Detroit, MI)
- NY Times: Who Won Night 1 of the Democratic Debate: Experts Weigh In
- Vox: 4 winners and 3 losers from the second night of the July Democratic debates
- Fox News: Doug Schoen: Second Democractic debate — Two big winners, two big losers and one big, unanswered question
- FiveThirtyEight: National 2020 Democratic Presidential Primary Polls
First Democratic Presidential Debates (June 26-27, 2019 – Hosted by NBC in Miami, FL)
- NBC News: First Democratic Debate, nights 1 and 2, in Under 10 Minutes
- FiveThirtyEight: What Went Down on Night One of the First Democratic Debates
- NYTimes: 6 Highlights from Night 2 of the Democratic Debates
- Fortune: Democratic Debate Night 2: What We Learned From Each Candidate
- The Hill: Winners and losers from two nights of Democratic debates