GRAFTON—Voting in an election gives the “little man” a voice that can be heard at some of the highest levels. To help encourage individuals to participate in such an important aspect of life, September has been designated as National Voter Registration Month.
West Virginia Secretary of state Mac Warner, in conjunction with fellow members of the National Association of Secretaries of State, are encouraging citizens to celebrate the month by registering to vote or updating their voter registration information.
“Voting is a right guaranteed to every eligible citizen. But you must be registered first,” voiced Warner. “In West Virginia, we’re making it easy, safe and secure to register online and in-person.”
National Voter Registration Month was established in 2002, as a non-partisan means of encouraging voter participation and increasing the awareness of state requirements and voting deadlines.
In a proclamation issued by Warner, it is said that registering to vote empowers eligible residents to exercise their right to vote on election day, and that the registration process is easier and more convenient than ever before.
He further states in the document that West Virginia’s user-friendly online voter registration system enables eligible residents to register, check or update their registration status 24-hours a day.
According to Warner, over the last four years, more than 255,880 eligible West Virginians have been registered to vote.
Of that total, nearly 67,000 high school students have stepped up to the plate, registering to vote.
“Those are incredible numbers given the small size of our state. Our efforts to make it easy to register and easy to vote in West Virginia have been recognized throughout the nation,” Warner said.
The West Virginia Secretary of State’s Office is an official partner with National Voter Registration Day, which was founded in 2012. More than two million Americans have registered to vote on this day since the inaugural year.
Local organizations, student groups, universities, nonprofits and businesses can get involved by hosting a Voter Registration Drive. This can easily be done by any group by submitting a form to the Secretary of State’s Office. The form is available on our website: “Host a Voter Registration Drive.”
To promote this effort, Secretary Warner said his office hopes to see voter registration drives throughout the state during September. This includes at least one in every county on National Voter Registration Day.
This year, Tuesday, September 28 will be designated as National Voter Registration Day, and Warner is challenging all 55 County Clerks to host voter registration drives outside of their respective courthouses.
Anyone planning to host a voter registration drive should consider using the National Voter Registration Day project at NationalVoterRegistrationDay.org. The website provides access to promotional support and materials including an organizer’s toolkit, posters and social media graphics.
“West Virginians should take full advantage of their right to vote and encourage their neighbors to do the same,” Warner said. “All citizens should take a few minutes this month to ensure they are registered and that their voter information is accurate.”
Registering to vote is as simple as logging on to www.GoVoteWV.com and completing the online applications or stopping in at the Taylor County Clerk’s office and completing a paper version.
“Or, you can call your county clerk to request that a paper Voter Registration Form be mailed to you,” Warner noted.
When registering in person, individuals will need to provide a valid form of photo identification such as a driver’s license. For a list of other information needed, or a complete list of valid forms of identification, please contact the Taylor County Clerk’s Office by phone at 304-265-1401.
To be eligible to vote in West Virginia, citizens must be 18 year of age or older before November 6 and must be a resident of the state.
For more information, resources or tools for learning about the application process, please log on to www.GoVoteWV.com.
As always, the Taylor County Clerk’s office will also be available to help residents learn of their eligibility to vote, as well as where their polling place will be.
So, what are you waiting for? Register today so that your voice can be heard.