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Elections in North Dakota

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Elections in North Dakota

Statewide elections in North Dakota occur every two years. Most executive offices and all legislators are elected to four-year terms, with half the terms expiring on Presidential election years, and the other half of the offices expiring on mid-term election years.


Voting requirements

North Dakota is the only state without a voter registration process. Any person over the age of 18 who has lived in a precinct for three or more months may vote in local, state, and federal elections without registration. In order to vote, however, a person must bring identification of a type pre-selected by the North Dakota Secretary of State. For the 2016 election, this list includes a North Dakota driver's license, non-driver's ID card, tribal government issued ID card, or an identification card provided by a North Dakota long-term care facility. Neither a United States Passport nor a North Dakota College- or University-issued ID card are accepted, and North Dakota does not offer provisional ballots to those who do not have an acceptable form of identification.


Since the 1972 presidential election, North Dakota has been able to send three electors to the Electoral College, who the voters pick in a first-past-the-post winner-take-all popular vote.

United States Senate

Like all US states, North Dakota must send two Senators to the United States Senate. North Dakota's two senators are in classes 1 and 3. Senators John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp currently serve the state; Hoeven was elected in 2010, and Heitkamp in 2012, both to six-year terms.

United States House of Representatives

Since 1972, North Dakota has had a single seat in the United States House of Representatives; Kevin Cramer currently fills the seat, the term for which expires every two years.


Every four years, concurrent with the federal presidential election, North Dakota voters select a governor and lieutenant governor to lead the executive branch for the next four years. The two offices are elected together on a single ballot line.

Other executive offices

Most of the other statewide executive offices are elected in a statewide popular vote to a term of four years. On presidential election years, voters select a State Auditor, State Treasurer, and Insurance Commissioner, all on a partisan ballot. They also select a Superintendent of Public Instruction on a nonpartisan ballot. On mid-term election years, voters select an Attorney General, Secretary of State, Commissioner of Agriculture, and Tax Commissioner. In addition, every two years, voters select someone to fill a six-year seat on the Public Service Commission.


All members of the North Dakota Legislative Assembly—whether the House of Representatives or the Senate—are elected to four-year terms. Even-numbered legislative districts elect their one senator and two representatives in presidential election years; odd-numbered districts do so in mid-term election years.

Supreme Court

Members of the North Dakota Supreme Court are elected by the people on a nonpartisan ballot to ten-year terms, arranged so that one seat is up every two years.


Elections in North Dakota Wikipedia

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