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Ahead of PA Primary, Officials Share Election Day Tips

by Emily Scott, Keystone State News Connection

May 13, 2022

Pennsylvania’s primary is four days away, and state election officials want to remind people of the different ways they can vote.

More than 8.7 million Pennsylvanians are registered to vote. Key races this year include governor, lieutenant governor, a U.S. Senate seat, U.S. representatives, state representatives, half of all state senate seats, and Democratic and Republican Party committee members.

Leigh Chapman, acting Secretary of the Commonwealth, said the state’s election website, can be an important resource for accurate election information.

“There you can find a tool to help voters locate their polling place, a candidate database, a list of voter rights, instructions for how voters can report a complaint if they experience a problem at their polling place and more,” Chapman outlined. “Voters can also call our toll-free voter hotline at 1-877-VOTES-PA.”

Pennsylvania is a closed-primary state, which means a voter must be registered as Democrat or Republican in order to vote on Tuesday. All registered voters can vote on local ballot questions and special elections. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. in all counties.

A recent poll found one in six election officials nationwide have experienced threats because of their job and a majority feel threats have increased in recent years. Chapman pointed out the state is making it a priority to make election workers feel safe.

“Protecting election officials is definitely a top concern, from poll workers, to county election directors, to county commissioners,” Chapman explained. “We are partnering with our federal partners and our state partners to ensure that there is a plan to make sure that poll workers and those that are counting every vote are protected.”

In total, Pennsylvania voters requested more than 807,000 mail ballots and more than 103,000 absentee ballots. Chapman added it is critical voters follow all instructions on how to fill out and seal their mail-in ballot for it to be counted. It must be returned to your county Board of Elections by 8 p.m. on May 17.

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