American Samoa law makes allowance for
U.S. military personnel, their spouses and
dependents to register and vote absentee in
In 2002, the law requiring persons to appear in person to
register to vote was amended, allowing “absent uniformed
services voter[s] and overseas voter[s]” to register without
having to appear in person before an election officer.
At the time, this exception only applied to elections for
the Office of the Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives.
In May 2008, the law was further amended to allow “absent
uniformed services voters” to register without having to appear
in person before an election officer, and the exception was
extended to elections for the offices of Governor/Lt. Governor,
and Representative to the Fono.
In order to qualify under the law, “absent unformed
services voters” must list American Samoa as his or her home of record or
legal domicile, and apply for registration on forms established
by the Chief Election Officer.
In March 2010, these laws were amended pursuant to the federal
Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act and in line with the
advent of technological means for transmitting correspondence.
Specifically, ASCA § 6.1102(a) was amended to provide absentee
voters who fall in the category of US or ASG employees,
students, and uniformed service members and overseas voters,
electronic methods to request
and the election office
transmit and accept absentee ballot applications. So as to
afford better access to the polls, the absentee ballot request
window was expanded to start January 1st of the
election year. In
addition, ASCA § 6.1103(b) was amended to provide absent
uniformed service members and overseas voters the option to
request that the election office deliver their blank ballots for
the Office of the Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives
To qualify to register absentee in American
U.S. military personnel,
their spouses and dependents, must meet minimum voter
qualifications established by the
American Samoa constitution.
To qualify to vote, you
Either a United States Citizen or a United States
At least 18 years old;
Lived in American Samoa for a total of at least 2
Be a bona fide resident of the election district for at
least 1 year preceding the upcoming election.
You shall be
disqualified to vote, if you are:
Determined to be under guardianship, non compos mentis, or
Convicted of a felony.
Disqualified voters may reregister to vote once
his or her civil rights
have been restored or he or she has maintained good behavior for
2 years following the date of conviction or release from prison,
whichever is later.
......Valid U.S. passport;
......Valid U.S. passport;
abstract of registration of birth and Photo ID (Photo ID must be
issued by a governmental agency);
2. ......Social Security Number
card, or an official notice from the Social Security
Administration identifying the applicant's Social Security
of status form
Close of Registration
The general register
shall be closed to registration on Tuesday, October 9th at 4:30
III. ABSENTEE VOTING
If you are serving in
active duty status in the U.S. military
forces, you may vote absentee.
To do so, you must request and return an absentee ballot
Request for Absentee
Request an absentee
ballot in person or by writing to the Chief Election Officer or
by utilizing the
Federal Post Card Application.
Your written or electronic request may be sent to
P.O. Box 3970,
FAXed to (684) 699-3574; or emailed
Requests for absentee
ballots must be received no later than the given date
from the Chief Election Officer.
Delivery of Absentee
receipt of a request for an absentee ballot within the time
frames listed above, the Chief Election Officer shall examine
the records to ascertain whether or not the applicant has
registered and is qualified to vote.
As soon as
the official ballots are printed and available (after September
1st), the Chief Election Officer shall send (using
the preferred method indicated) in a forwarding envelope via
airmail an official ballot, instructions, and official ballot
Return of Absentee
ballots must be returned via airmail and received by the Chief
Election Officer no later than the given date from the Chief
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