Ohio County voter turnout among tops in W.Va.

WHEELING — Voter turnout in Ohio County for Tuesday’s primary election was among the best in West Virginia — but still not as high as first reported on election night.

Figures released by the West Virginia Secretary of State’s office showed statewide turnout at 30.32%, with 358,173 West Virginians casting ballots. There are 1,181,437 registered voters in the Mountain State.

Ohio County’s turnout was listed at 40.1% — fourth highest in the state. Municipal elections in Wheeling were a driving factor for the turnout. Having the highest turnout numbers across the state were Grant County with 43.93%, Doddridge County at 40.66% and Wirt County at 40.59%.

Ohio County’s ballot report on election night initially showed a turnout rate in the county of 56.01%

“That is incorrect,” Ohio County Administrator Randy Russell explained Wednesday. “At the start of the counting, we have to insert the number of registered voters (in the county), and we missed a set. That was corrected this morning.”

The West Virginia Secretary of State’s Office confirmed the error and provided more detail.

“We checked with Ohio County,” said Landon Palmer, assistant communications director. “This discrepancy originated from the non-partisan voter registration totals not being entered (Tuesday) night in the reporting software.”

He attributed the discrepancy to “human error on behalf of an ES&S technician helping with their end-of-night count.”

“Just to be clear, this was just voter registration totals,” Palmer continued. “This did not affect vote totals in any way. (It) just inflated the turnout percentage because last night the software showed less voters in Ohio County.

“The 40.10% number you see on our website is correct.”

In Ohio County, there are 6,026 voters registered as non-partisan as of the registration deadline on April 23, according to Secretary of State figures. There also are 10,466 Republicans; 9,082 Democrats, 253 Libertarians, 42 Mountain Party members and 1,491 registered as “other.”

There were 10,972 ballots cast in Ohio County among 27,360 registered voters. Republican ballots totaled 5,987; Democratic ballots, 4,451; non-partisan, 509; and Mountain Party ballots, 25.

Five of the six Northern Panhandle counties exceeded the state’s turnout number, with Hancock County being the exception at 28.19%. Hancock County saw 5,438 ballots cast, with the county having 19,280 voters. Republican ballots totaled 3,475, while 1,839 Democrats cast ballots. There were 123 non-partisan votes, and one Mountain Party ballot.

Marshall County’s turnout for Tuesday’s election was 31.82% The county reported 6,431 ballots cast from among 20,210 registered voters. Republican ballots totaled 4,153; Democratic ballots, 2,205; non-partisan, 63; and Mountain Party, 10.

Turnout in Brooke County was 32.02%. The county has 14,721 registered voters, and 4,731 cast primary ballots. Among Republicans, 2,616 turned out to vote, as did 1,964 Democrats. Non-partisan votes totaled 126; and Mountain Party ballots, 7.

Wetzel County saw 32.08% of its 9,940 registered voters cast ballots. There were 3,208 ballots cast in the county, with 1,803 coming from Republicans and 1,310 coming from Democrats.

In Tyler County, 33.2% of 1,870 ballots were cast from among 5,632 registered voters. Republican votes totaled 1,578; and Democratic votes, 258. There were an additional 33 ballots cast by non-partisan voters, and one by a Mountain Party member.


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