Thousands vote early in western Virginia

Published: Oct. 31, 2022 at 9:13 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - By the time voters head to the polls November 8, thousands of people in western Virginia will have already cast their ballots. Since early voting started in late September, the numbers have been climbing steadily.

Both leading political parties have encouraged their supporters to vote early.

In Roanoke, election officials said they’ve seen more people than they initially expected, and the numbers have continued to grow.

Albert Wingo voted Monday morning.

“So I’m here early to make sure I get my vote in,” Wingo told WDBJ7. “And it’s important for everyone to vote.”

By last week, the number of people voting early in-person at the Roanoke City Registrar’s Office was approaching 300 each day.

Andrew Cochran is Roanoke’s Director of Elections.

“We’ve been issuing vote-by-mail ballots. We’ve issued about 3,500 of those. A little over 4,000 people have come to vote early in person. And while that’s going on we have been preparing for Election Day, a lot of logistics and a lot of materials that have to be prepared to send out to the precincts,” Cochran said.

In-person early voting will continue in localities across Virginia through 5 p.m. Saturday.

Election Day is Tuesday November 8, with the polls open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

“I think it speaks the best of our Democracy when people take advantage of the rights that they have, that people in other countries don’t have, Cochran said. “So come out and let your voice be heard with your vote.”

A new development this year is same-day registration.

People will be able to go to precincts, fill out an application, and then cast a provisional ballot on Election Day.