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Cook County Jail Voting 2023

A man incarcerated at Cook County Jail sits to register, then vote for a local election in 2023.

Charles Rex Arbogast

Cook County Jail Voting 2023

A man incarcerated at Cook County Jail sits to register, then vote for a local election in 2023.

Charles Rex Arbogast

Voting in handcuffs: What people in Cook County Jail have to say about the right to vote

An inside look at the first jail-based, in-person polling site in America.

A man incarcerated at Cook County Jail sits to register, then vote for a local election in 2023.

Charles Rex Arbogast

   

What’s it like to vote behind bars? Over at Cook County Jail, people are able to exercise their right to vote while they await their trial. The voter turnout rate there at times has been higher than the city as a whole.

Reset learns what people in jail had to say about why it was important for them to weigh in on the 2024 election.

GUEST: Alex Keefe, WBEZ engagement editor

Correction: Due to a reporting error, we incorrectly stated that Cook County Jail became home to the first jail-based voting site in America in 2020. In fact, the jail first became an official polling place in 2020 following the passage of a new state law, but in-person voting inside the jail had occurred during previous election cycles.

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