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Secretary of State Warner breaks down the changes to the 2020 voting process

Election officials are preparing for one of the most unique election West Virginia has seen.
Election officials are preparing for one of the most unique election West Virginia has seen.(WDTV)
Published: Apr. 6, 2020 at 5:36 PM EDT
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May 19th marks the last day to register to vote in West Virginia after Governor Jim Justice postponed the primary elections 28 days.

The fate of hundreds of city and council seats, the governorship and the balance of the state's Supreme Court are on the line in this election.

"Three of the five Supreme Court justices in West Virginia will be chosen during this [June] election. There is no runoff. There is no general election in November. This is the election. So, this is a very important election," said West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner.

He says we will begin receiving absentee ballots as early as next week.

"This Coronavirus, now, is a national emergency. There is a state of emergency inside the state of West Virginia. So, that gives everybody that medical excuse now to vote in an absentee ballot," said Secretary Warner.

For voters that decide to vote through the mail, Secretary Warner asks you register and vote early.

"That will allow us to start processing these mounds of mail we are anticipating at the county clerks' offices," said Secretary Warner.

Voters have raised concerns about how the change in voting could lead to election fraud.

"I want everybody to know, we have five times the number of investigators we used to have. So if somebody sees something, we want you to say something," said Secretary Warner.

He says he does not know for sure how the shift in elections will affect voter turnout during the primaries. He said the availability for every voter to skip the polls could lead to a higher voter turnout.

He also urges voters to be patient with results as the process to count and report votes will be slower than most years.

The deadline to register to vote is May 19th, the deadline to send in a ballot is June 3rd.

For further information on voting, Secretary Warner recommends you visit the Secretary of State's website, and to double check anything you read on social media.