Voting in DC
Our Political Geography
Every D.C. voter lives in ...
A Ward - The city is divided into eight wards based on the number of residents. To assure equal representation, the boundaries are redrawn every 10 years according to the population numbers from the latest census.
Advisory Neighborhood Commission - Wards are divided into Advisory Neighborhood Commission areas that are often the same as traditional neighborhoods. Each ward has between four and six Advisory Neighborhood Commission areas. The city’s 41 Advisory Neighborhood Commissions each have between two and 12 members.
A Single Member District - Advisory Neighborhood Commission areas are divided into Single Member Districts (SMDs), each represented by a Neighborhood Commissioner. A Neighborhood Commissioner represents about 2,000 residents.
A Precinct - Each voter is assigned a precinct in their neighborhood based on where they live. Each precinct has one polling location where you vote on Election Day.
Our Elected Officials
Mayor - The city’s Chief Executive. Responsible for the operation of the agencies that make the government work. Prepares annual city budget. Approves or rejects new city laws. 4-Year Term.
Council of the District of Columbia - The city’s Policy-Making Body. Writes city’s laws. Oversees the agencies and boards that make the city government work. Reviews and approves Mayor’s annual budget. 13 members.
- One (1) Council Chair - The Presiding Officer of the Council. Appoints members of the Council’s committees. Represents the District as a whole. 4-year term.
- Four (4) At-Large Members – Represent the District as a whole. 4-year term.
- Eight (8) Ward Members - Each represents a single ward in the District. 4-year term.
Attorney General - The city’s Chief Legal Officer. Protects District citizens by providing legal representation to D.C. agencies, officers, and employees. 4-Year Term.
Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners - Represent a Single Member District on an Advisory Neighborhood Commission (ANC). Advise the Mayor, Council, and city agencies on public policy in the neighborhood. 2-Year Term.
State Board of Education - The city’s Education Policy body. Approves policies on academic standards, testing, and graduation requirements for both public and public charter schools.
- Eight (8) Ward Members - Represent a single ward in the District. 2-Year Term.
- One (1) At-Large Member - Represents the District as a whole. 2-Year Term.
President and Vice President of the United States - The candidates for President and Vice President run together as a pair. You vote for one pair. In the general election, DC has three electoral votes for the President and Vice President in the Electoral College. 4-Year Term.
Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives - Serves on Congressional committees, votes on procedural matters, and participates in House debates. The DC Delegate is a non-voting member of the House. The delegate may be a voting member of a House Committee and may introduce legislation. 2-Year Term.
Two U.S. (Shadow) Senators – Volunteer position to advocate for DC Statehood. The position is not recognized by the United States Senate and cannot vote on matters before the Senate. 6-Year Term.
One (Shadow) Representative to the U.S. House of Representatives - Volunteer position to advocate for DC Statehood. They are not recognized by the United States House of Representatives and cannot vote on matters before the House. 2-Year Term.