CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — It’s a decision that now has the full support of the Secretary of State, who runs the election, as well as many state legislators. The West Virginia Primary is moving from Tuesday, May 12th, to Tuesday, June 9th. But there will still be a big push to get as many people as possible to mail-in absentee ballots, instead of voting in-person.
“At the end of the day, I want this to be the biggest turnout of all-time. You know, because all of us should treasure the opportunity and privilege to vote, and I want us to just have that opportunity and by moving this it will give us a lot better chance to do so,” said Gov. Jim Justice, (R) West Virginia.
Many polling places are at schools, but children will not be in class on June 9th. There was also a concern that those most at risk – senior citizens – are the same people who vote in the largest percentages, and make up majority of the nine-thousand estimated poll workers. The final factor – public health.
“To make sure that this election is run safely, with the utmost concern towards the health data that now the doctors have reported to us, that we will be peaking about the time that the original primary was scheduled. So the Governor has made the correct call,” said Secretary of State Mac Warner, (R) West Virginia.
The Secretary of State’s office is still urging as many people as possible to register for an absentee ballot, that can be mailed in. Meanwhile, aside from moving an election, the governor is also changing the school calendar.
“If West Virginia schools do go back into session, that will now happen on April 30th, which is a ten-day push back from the current date of April 20th. But the governor says it’s a moving target that could change again,” said Mark Curtis, 13 News Chief Political Reporter.