Charleston, W.Va. – West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie E. Tennant, the state’s chief elections officer, said today that early voting in the special gubernatorial election begins Wednesday, September 21, 2011.
Voters can cast their ballot during the early voting period at their county courthouse or courthouse annex during regular business hours.
The final day of early voting is Saturday, October 1, 2011.
Voters may also choose to cast their ballot at their precinct on Election Day – October 4, 2011. Polling places will be open on October 4 from 6:30 AM to 7:30 PM.
Candidates will appear on the ballot in this order: Bill Maloney, Republican; Earl Ray Tomblin, Democrat; Bob Henry Baber, Mountain; Marla Ingels, Independent; Harry Bertram, American Third Position.
There are also three certified write-in candidates: John R. “Rick” Bartlett of Kingwood, Phil Hudok of Huttonsville, and Donald Lee Underwood of Buffalo.
“The winner of this election will serve for about 14 months, and a lot could happen in that period of time,” Secretary Tennant said. “Think about the last 14 months. We will have had three statewide elections since then. And there are important issues facing our state like job creation and Marcellus Shale. This election is very important and the people of West Virginia should go out to the ballot box and make their voice heard.”
According to the Statewide Voter Registration System maintained by the Secretary of State’s Office as of September 20 there are 1,215,213 registered voters in West Virginia. There are 643,859 registered Democrat voters, 350,421 registered Republican voters, 200,261 voters registered with no party affiliation, 1,227 registered Mountain Party voters, and 19,445 voters registered with other political parties.
Secretary Tennant is also reminding voters who have requested an absentee ballot of a new feature on the Secretary of State’s website at www.wvsos.com. The new absentee ballot tracking feature allows citizens who have requested an absentee ballot to see when their request was received by their county clerk and when their ballot was sent to them. The absentee voter can also make sure their voted ballot was received by their county clerk and that their vote was counted.