Charleston, W.Va. – One year ago Tuesday Senator Robert C. Byrd, the longest serving member of Congress in United States history, passed away.
Since his death, West Virginia voters have been to the ballot box three times – once in a special U.S. Senate primary, once in the 2010 general election, and once for a special gubernatorial primary election. Former Governor Joe Manchin won the special senatorial election and West Virginia Senate President Earl Ray Tomblin, who is acting as governor, won the special gubernatorial primary election.
Voters will go to the polls once again on October 4, in a special gubernatorial general election.
Secretary of State Natalie E. Tennant, West Virginia’s chief elections officer, said the past 365 days have been nonstop not only for her office but also for election workers in the 55 county clerk’s offices.
Tennant’s office worked closely with lawmakers during a special session last summer to draft legislation that met all state and federal election requirements. State election officials then administered the regularly scheduled 2010 general election. After the state supreme court ruled a special election for governor needed to be held after Manchin won the Senate election, Tennant’s office again took the lead role.
“The people in this office have had unprecedented demands placed on them, and we’ve met those demands and exceeded expectations,” Tennant said. “From day one, we were challenged on aspects like the timing of the special election and even the easy to understand design of the special election ballot. But it was ultimately shown that this office correctly applied the law. In the past year the people of West Virginia exercised their right to vote not one or two times, but three times. And they will have the opportunity again in October.”
Tennant also commended the workers in county clerks offices and poll workers.
More information on the special gubernatorial election can be found on the Secretary of State’s website at www.wvsos.com.