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Primary Election Day Arrives in West Virginia

WHEELING – West Virginia votes today in a primary election that has already seen 4,550 in the Northern Panhandle cast early ballots.

Polls open at 6:30 a.m. and close at 7:30 p.m.

Redistricting last year and the redrawing of precinct lines has placed many local voters in different voting precincts with different voting locations, and election clerks report most calls they are receiving are coming from voters asking, “Where do I go vote?”

Voters may learn that answer by going online to the West Virginia Secretary of State’s election website at sos.wv.gov/elections/Pages/GoVoteWV.aspx, and clicking on the link stating “find your polling place.”

They also may call their respective county elections officials at the following numbers:

– Brooke County: 304-737-3661

– Hancock County: 304-564-3311 (ext. 288)

– Marshall County: 304-845-1220

– Ohio County: 304-234-3750

– Tyler County: 304-758-2102

– Wetzel County: 304-455-8224

The early voting period ended Saturday across West Virginia, with most local counties reporting tepid turnout so far.

Early voting in Hancock County, however, was busy as the county has on the ballot contested GOP primary races for commissioner, county clerk and circuit clerk, and a contest for non-partisan board of election seats.

The county saw 608 early votes.

“It is high, even compared to the (presidential) primary of 2020,” explained elections clerk Jeanne Ostrander. “We were quite surprised, nice to know people came out and early voted.”

She hopes the momentum will continue.

“I think we will have a nice turnout – but maybe not a record breaker,” Ostrander said.

Early voting lagged somewhat in Ohio County where 1,445 cast ballots.

“It’s not really low,” said Toni Chieffalo, county coordinator of elections. “We stayed busy every day except for that one Saturday (April 30).”

Chieffalo predicts a voter turnout of about 40 percent in Ohio County, where there are 26,699 registered voters as of April 30.

Marshall County saw 1,007 cast early ballots, according to County Clerk Melanie Madden.

“During COVID, things went out of whack, so we didn’t know what to expect,” she said. “But that number is not so bad. It’s not as low as we initially thought it would be.

“I think it will be lower on Election Day, too, although we’ve had a lot of phone calls.”

Tyler County reported 466 casting early votes there, while Brooke County saw slightly more at 486.

In Wetzel County, the early vote total was 538.

“That’s fairly low,” said County Clerk Carol Haught. “The phone calls we’ve been getting are from people asking where to go vote. I really haven’t had any calls about candidates. There is low interest.”

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