Early voting winds down
by PHILLIP WILLIAMS
Nov 04, 2012 | 743 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Almost 7,000 of Upshur County’s nearly 27,000 registered voters had cast early ballots for this Tuesday’s general election as of Friday morning, the last day for in-person early voting.

As of about 9:30 a.m., 6,419 had voted at the Upshur County Courthouse, while another 579 mailed-in ballots had been received, a total of 6,998, said County Clerk Brandy Lee.

She had said Tuesday her office was “averaging a voter a minute” in in-person voting, which began Oct. 22, but said Friday that “the past two days have slacked off a little bit.”

Early in-person voting was scheduled to end at 7 p.m. Voting hours on election day will be 7 a.m.-7 p.m. (See a list of Upshur County polling places elsewhere in this issue.)

“Everything’s going real smoothly,” Mrs. Lee had said Tuesday. Lines for early voting were “not too bad,” she said, adding that she believed 30 persons were waiting Monday night, “but we’re getting them in and out of there pretty fast.

“I expected it to be heavy, but I’m pleased with the ability of our office to process them so quickly, (so) that we don’t have lines backed up out the door,” Mrs. Lee said.

Oct. 23, the second day of in-person voting, drew the highest single-day turnout with 793, she said Friday.

She urged voters to bring their yellow current voter registration cards to the polls Tuesday if at all possible, although the cards are not required to vote as long as the person is properly registered and can produce identification such as a driver’s license or other acceptable ID.

Mrs. Lee also reminded that cameras, cell phones, and other electronic devices capable of recording cannot be turned on in the polling place.

Mailed ballots must be received by election day, unless they were sent from overseas, Mrs. Lee said. Ballots from there must be postmarked by Tuesday and must arrive within five days after election day to be counted, she said.

The ballot includes a box to vote a straight-party ticket. However, if a voter then goes down the ballot and votes for a candidate of another party in an individual race, that overrides the straight-party vote for that office.

Besides the Presidential race between Democratic incumbent Barack Obama, Republican Mitt Romney, Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Dr. Jill Church, there are several state and Congressional races on Tuesday’s ballot, and three Upshur County school districts are holding school board elections.

In addition, an Upshur Countian, Sherri Little, is the Libertarian Party nominee for the State Board of Education against incumbent Republican Thomas Ratliff.

That race ran into a snafu in Camp County, where she was initially wrongly listed on the ballot as the Democratic Party candidate (no Democrat is running).

New Diana, Harmony, and Union Hill ISDs are holding School Board elections Tuesday. While those schools handled their own early voting since one or more school districts spill over into a neighboring county, Upshur voters in the school races will vote at the same polling places Tuesday where they vote in the General Election.

At each polling place where a school board race is being held, that election will be on a separate ballot from the Presidential and other contests.

At New Diana, which elects board members by the position system, four board seats are up for election and two of the voting boxes will be in Harrison County.

Three candidates seek the Position 1 seat being vacated by Susan Vickery. They are Jeff Hamilton, Ryan Martin and Dwayne Leach.

In the Position 6 race, incumbent Steve Skinner is opposed for reelection by Dale Manes and Joe LeGrand.

Position 3 incumbent Tim Thornton and Position 7 incumbent Donald Willeford are unopposed for reelection.

At Harmony, four incumbents who are running for reelection, and one challenger, are seeking four at-large seats up for election.

The incumbents are Garry Littlejohn, William M. Smith, Michael Seahorn and Jerry W. Key. The challenger is David G. Wilson.

Union Hill has five candidates for three at-large seats, one of which is vacant.

Bobbie Mauk and Sheila D. Johnson are seeking reelection. Other candidates are Scott Cook, Chuck Montgomery and Jim Archer.

For more information on the election, call the County Clerk’s Office at 843-4015 or the County Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office, 843-3085 during regular business hours.
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