In-person early voting has begun for November’s General and Special Elections. Candidates are vying for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, 61st District State Delegate. Requested absentee ballots have also begun to be mailed out.
The last day to request an absentee ballot is Friday, October 22 by 5p.m. Absentee ballots must be returned by mail and postmarked by Election Day, November 2. Absentee voters may also drop off their marked and sealed ballots at their local voter registration office by 7p.m. Election Day. Mecklenburg’s voter registration office has recently changed. The new address is 316 Washington Street in Boydton. The office hours are Monday-Friday 8:30a.m. to 4:30p.m. and Saturday, October 23 & 30 from 8:00a.m. to 4:00p.m. If you have any questions, please contact them at (434) 738-6191 ext. 4313.
To request an absentee ballot, visit mecklenburgelections.com/absentee-voting. The Virginia Department of Elections anticipates a high volume of mail-in ballots again for this election. They are requesting that voters who wish to vote by mail request and return their ballots as soon as possible to avoid election result delays.
Early in-person voting ends on Saturday, October 30 at 5p.m. Voters do not have to fill out an application to vote in person. They will only need to show ID and cast a ballot at the local registration office. Information about what IDs are acceptable can be found at elections.virginia.gov/voterID.
Virginia’s incumbent Governor Ralph Northam will not be seeking re-election due to term limits. Instead, candidates Terry McAuliffe (D), Glenn Youngkin (R), and Princess Blanding (Liberation Party) are competing for the seat.
The gubernatorial candidate’s mission statements are as follows.
Terry McAuliffe—previously elected Governor from 2014-2018—states that “now is the time to push Virginia forward to build a stronger and fairer post-COVID economy.” If elected, he will “continue the fight for civil rights and voting rights, attract businesses to create the best jobs and raise wages, ensure all Virginians have access to quality affordable healthcare, build a clean energy economy to address climate change, and address the affordable housing crisis our communities are facing.” McAuliffe also states that he will make an unprecedented investment into education.
Glenn Youngkin—former co-CEO and president of The Carlyle Group—emphasizes Virginia’s need for a governor with “real-world” experience. Youngkin states that he will, “create jobs, keep businesses from leaving, and put an open-for-business sign on Virginia, and create a rip-roaring economy that lifts all Virginians.” Youngkin also states that he will protect Virginian’s Constitutional rights and personal liberties.
Princess Blanding boasts 13 years of experience as an educator in the Commonwealth. Blanding states, “Virginians continue to face an array of uncertainties as we navigate through two public health crises: COVID-19 and systemic racism.” She believes, “Now, more than ever, Virginia is in need of progressive, courageous leadership that will put people over profits and politics.”
Running for Lieutenant Governor are Hala Ayala (D) and Winsome Sears (R). Hala Ayala’s professional experience includes working as a cybersecurity specialist with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Winsome Sears’s professional experience includes formerly working as a member of the Virginia General Assembly. Sears is also a former U.S. Marine.
Virginia’s Attorney General election sees incumbent Mark Herring (D) and Jason Miyares (R) competing for the seat. Herring has served as Virginia’s attorney general since 2014. Miyares has served as state delegate for District 82 since 2016.
Mark Herring believes “attorney general should be the people’s lawyer, working to keep Virginians safe and ensuring justice, equality, and opportunity for all.”Notably, Herring opposed Trump’s immigration policies in the Middle East, supported same-sex marriage, and supported the Affordable Care Act.
Jason Miyares believes, “the attorney general is the top cop of Virginia.” Miyares notably served as a former prosecutor, and supports victims of violent crime first. “Virginia’s murder rate is the highest it’s been since the turn of the decade. We desperately need some type of check and balance in Richmond.”
District 61 will see incumbent Tommy Wright (R) compete with Trudy Bell Berry (D) and Joseph Paschal (Libertarian) for the House of Delegates seat.
Delegate Tommy Wright first assumed office in 2001. He does not have an official website; instead Wright lets his 20 years of work serve as proof of where his priorities lie.
Trudy Bell Berry is running to, “put people first and ensure that the voices of rural Virginians are heard by the General Assembly.” She believes that rural Virginians need, “well-paid jobs, affordable broadband, a high quality education system, access to affordable healthcare, and a clean environment.”
Joe Paschal’s vision is to, “restore the liberties that our founding fathers envisioned.” Paschal is committed to protecting Virginians’ 2nd Amendment rights; he also values election reform, elimination of personal property taxes, and the expansion of rural broadband.
Reminder that voters no longer need a reason to vote absentee. Any registered voters may request an absentee ballot either in person or by mail. Again, the important dates are:
- Last day to request an absentee ballot: Friday, October 22.
- Early in-person voting ends: Saturday, October 30.
- Election day: Tuesday, November 2.