Voting on an absentee ballot in Virginia primary? What you should know

Local Election HQ

CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WRIC) — After Governor Ralph Northam postponed the Virginia state primary from June 9 to June 23 in light of coronavirus concerns, opportunities surrounding absentee voting opened up.

Virginia voters can cast an absentee ballot for the June primary either in-person or by mailing in a ballot; and can request one without having an excuse.

Northam waived the absentee excuse requirement in light of social distancing recommendations.

“So anyone can use visa code 2a, which is “illness or disability,” because of COVID—19 to request an absentee ballot,” Chesterfield County Elections Registrar Constance Hargrove said.

This move is separate from no-excuse absentee measures passed in the General Assembly during the 2020 session.

Another measure enacted amid growing concern over the spread of COVID-19, voters in the Virginia primary can submit a ballot without a witness signature; something Attorney General Mark Herring said would help keep some people from having to risk their safety.

Hargrove says she encourages “anyone who can get a witness to go ahead and do that because it is for their security. However, if they live alone and they don’t have anyone to witness their ballot then they just complete the ballot and make sure they fill out all the other information and mail it back in to us.”

The last day to request an absentee ballot by mail is June 16, which can be done in local elections offices or online by 5 p.m. that day.

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