Although the runoff elections are scheduled for Tuesday, early voting begins Thursday, and absentee voting has been ongoing for some time.
The Payne County Election Board issued a press release to The O’Colly on Tuesday, reminding voters that the Aug. 25 runoff election will be for registered Republicans only. The only race on the ballot will be the Republican runoff between incumbent Sheriff Kevin Woodward, and challenger Joe Harper.
Since Republican primaries in Oklahoma are closed, Democrats and Independents cannot participate in this election. And since there was no opposition-party challenger for this seat, the winner of Tuesday’s primary election will win the seat by default.
Republicans who are registered voters of Payne County have several options to participate in this election, according to the Election Board’s release.
A separate press release issued by Oklahoma’s State Election Board reminds voters that there are multiple options to turn in absentee ballots.
In addition to returning ballots by mail, voters may hand-deliver their standard absentee ballots to the county election board that issued them. It’s important to note that in order to be counted, absentee ballots must be returned to the county election board by 7 p.m. on Aug. 25.
Absentee ballots can be tracked by logging in to the Oklahoma Voter Portal, using the requested information.
If voters received an absentee ballot, but decided to vote in person, they should destroy their absentee ballot, and take advantage of one of the in-person voting options.
Early in-person voting will be available on Thursday and Friday between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., at the Paynce County Election Board office. The office is on the second floor of the county administration building, located at 315 W 6th St.
To obtain a ballot, voters should bring their valid government-issued photo ID, their free voter registration card, or be prepared to sign an affidavit to receive a provisional ballot.
In person voting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 25 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Anyone who is in line at 7 p.m. should be given the opportunity to vote.
To find their polling place or see a sample ballot, registered voters should go to the Oklahoma Voter Portal, and login using the requested information.
If their address has changed since they last voted, voters should go to the polling place listed on their registration, or given to them through the voter portal. While they are there, they may fill out a form instructing the election board to transfer their registration to the new address.
A Friendly Reminder from The Election Board
The election board’s press release came with a reminder that violations of election law will be reported to the proper law enforcement authorities. That may sound intimidating, but as long as voters remember a few key points, they should be fine.
First of all, do not attempt to vote more than once. Voters who have already returned their absentee ballots should not attempt to vote in-person, or mail in additional ballots.
Second, do not bring alcoholic beverages or other intoxicants to vote. Technically, no intoxicating liquors may be possessed within a half mile of a polling place.
Finally, electioneering is illegal with 300 feet of a ballot box. Do not engage in any campaign activities, official or unofficial, near a polling place.
Editor's Note: This story was updated on Aug. 20 for publication in the Friday paper. Specifically, the word "today" was changed to "Thursday".