Early Election Day

Nearly 1,400 voters cast ballots in the Northern Panhandle for the Nov. 6 general election during the first day of early voting in West Virginia.

A total of 384 early ballots were submitted in Ohio County before 5 p.m., election workers said. Late in the day, Marshall County reported 302 voters; Brooke County, 221; Hancock County, 205; Wetzel County, 200; and Tyler County, 80.

During the first 30 minutes after polls opened, 31 cast ballots in Ohio County. First to vote was Ohio County Republican Party Chairwoman Elgine McArdle.

“It matters,” she said. “It’s important. You have to put your money where your mouth is.”

Lorita Eisenhauer of Wheeling said two issues on the ballot brought her out to vote early. One was the proposed state constitutional amendment that would allow elected sheriffs to serve more than two terms in office. The other is the proposed elimination of a city of Wheeling ordinance that currently requires two police officers to ride in a cruiser.

“If you don’t vote, you don’t have a right to complain,” Eisenhauer said, noting she believes there needs to be a new sheriff every two years to ensure a change in thinking.

Anita Bowman of Wheeling came with her friend, Alexandra Yazombek, to the polls.

“I came to vote Democrat and to vote in the governor’s race,” Bowman said.

Yacombek added Social Security was the issue most important to her.

“I’m old, and I want to make sure that what I paid in, I get out,” she said.

Toni Chieffalo, coordinator of elections in Ohio County, wanted to remind voters they now have to go through more extensive security as they enter the City-County Building, and they might not want to bring unnecessary items with them.

“There will be lines,” she continued. “Bring your patience with you.”