Get Informed: Library and Online Resources for Voters

Midterm elections are scheduled for Tuesday, November 2, less than three weeks from now. Senate races are going on in 36 states; races for governor are taking place in 37 states (including Massachusetts), and races for the House of Representatives are going on in every state. Wherever you’re registered to vote, you can arm yourself with information about candidates, ballot questions, and more with the following library-recommended resources.

Get the latest news coverage through the library’s subscriptions to the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, and more (including local Massachusetts newspapers) through our News databases. Or, search for transcripts of interviews with candidates through LexisNexis Academic, which includes transcripts from media outlets like Fox, NPR, and ABC. Just click on the “News” category on the side, and choose “TV & Radio Transcripts.” (A recent search for the phrase “senate race” in the last three months yielded 1,591 results!)

Want information about where to vote, or what’s on your local ballot? If you’re a Massachusetts voter, there is a limited number of Voter Information Packets located near the magazine rack in the library entrance from the Deloitte Cafe. You can get the same information by going to the Massachusetts Election Division website – you can locate your polling place or check out this year’s three statewide ballot questions. If you’re registered in another state, similar information can be found at the League of Women Voters’ Smart Voter website. Just enter your address to locate your polling place and local ballot.

And if the election’s got you interested in American politics, the library has tons of books and DVDs on U.S. politics and government, and voting and political participation in the U.S., not to mention recent books and audiobooks about political figures like Karl Rove, John Edwards, Michael Bloomberg, and Ted Kennedy.

As Thomas Jefferson said in a 1789 letter, β€œ[W]herever the people are well informed they can be trusted with their own government.” (You can read the whole letter, if you want, in the library’s copies of Jefferson’s papers.)