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Primary Election Day Indiana in the United States

Indiana’s primary election, also known as primary election day, is listed as a state holiday in which state government offices in Indiana are closed. It is the first Tuesday after the first Monday of May and every two years thereafter.

Indiana State Capitol Building
State government offices are usually closed on Indiana's primary election day (state capitol building pictured above).
State government offices are usually closed on Indiana's primary election day (state capitol building pictured above).

What Do People Do?

Polling Places are open from 6am (06:00) to 6pm (18:00) local time on primary election day in Indiana. Some people volunteer to be poll workers for the primary election. Residents in Indiana who cannot cast their ballot in person on primary election day can be absentee voters.

Voters eligible to vote in Indiana’s primary election must be United States citizens and residents in Indiana. Depending on the city or town having the election, the major political parties will nominate candidates for various offices. School board members are elected by voters in several school corporations in either the primary or general election.

Public Life

Indiana’s primary election day is listed as a state holiday, in which the state government is closed, including the Secretary of State's office. Federal government offices and some local government offices are open. Unless proscribed by law, the governor may set or change the date on which this holiday is observed.


A primary election is a preliminary election in which voters nominate party candidates for office. Voters in a jurisdiction select candidates for subsequent elections.  It is one way that a political party nominates candidates for a following general election. They are common in the United States and are conducted by the government on behalf of the parties.

Indiana primaries are “closed” primaries. When voters sign in at their polling place, the clerks ask them which political party ballot they prefer. They vote for only the candidates on this ballot. In the primary, voters nominate the candidates of their party who will be on the ballot in the general election.

Primary Election Day Indiana Observances

WeekdayDateYearNameHoliday TypeWhere It is Observed
TueMay 42010Primary Election Day IndianaState holidayIndiana
TueMay 82012Primary Election Day IndianaState holidayIndiana
TueMay 62014Primary Election Day IndianaState holidayIndiana
TueMay 52015Primary Election Day IndianaState holidayIndiana
TueMay 32016Primary Election Day IndianaState holidayIndiana

Quick Facts

Many Indiana residents take part in voting on primary election day in Indiana.

Primary Election Day Indiana 2016

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 (local in Indiana)

Primary Election Day Indiana 2017

Primary Election Day Indiana does not occur in 2017


Name in other languages

Primary Election Day IndianaEnglish
Día de Elección Primaria en IndianaSpanish
עיקרי בחירות אינדיאנהHebrew
الأولية انتخاب إندياناArabic
예비 선거 인디애나Korean
Primærvalg i IndianaNorwegian
Wahltag in IndianaGerman

List of dates for other years

Other holidays in May 2016 in the United States

United Nation Holiday on May 3, 2016

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