West Virginia

Articles about voting issues in West Virginia.

West Virginia: Dark money tactics used in West Virginia’s primary could spread as midterm season heats up | CNN

A pair of mysterious pop-up super PACs, one with Republican roots and another tied to Democrats, spent more than $3 million in hopes of swaying West Virginia’s GOP Senate primary while keeping their donor lists hidden from voters until after the election. The groups arrived on the scene with blurry names, like “Mountain Families PAC,” but blunt intentions: to quietly use truckloads of outside money to feather their political beds ahead of the November general election. By the time their donors were revealed a few days ago, the primary felt like a distant memory. To do this, the PACs used legal tactics that were nonetheless designed to defy the spirit of current campaign finance law, campaign finance experts say. Read More

West Virginia: Voter ID Law: Some Say It’s A Balance, Others Say It’s Not Needed At All | West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Having gone into effect at the beginning of this year, West Virginia’s new voter identification law sees its first statewide election during the May 8  primaries. While state legislators responsible for passing the law say it strikes a balance, experts opposed to such measures — here and elsewhere in the country — say it is a “solution in search of a problem.” Some organizations, though, are teaming with the Secretary of State’s office for public outreach programs to help educate voters about the law and what they need to bring with them to the polls. The West Virginia Legislature passed the law during the 2016 regular session. Under the provisions of the new law, voters are required to show an acceptable form of ID to legally make their way to the polls. The aim, according to Republican leaders, was to prevent voter fraud while not burdening those who legitimately want to exercise their constitutional rights. Read More

West Virginia: How West Virginia Is Trying to Build Hacker-Proof Voting | The New York Times

The next election in the Mountaineer State was still weeks away. But 5,000 miles from West Virginia’s capital city, in a suburb northwest of Moscow, someone was already scouting for ways to get into the state’s election computer network this spring. That someone’s IP address, a designation as a “malicious host,” even a tiny Russian flag — it was all there on a computer display in an office just across the Kanawha River from the state’s gold-domed capitol. And he had company. “See, right here, a Canadian IP address is trying to go into online voter registration,” said the West Virginia Air National Guard sergeant who was tracking the would-be intruders, pointing at the screen. “Here’s someone from Great Britain trying to do the same. China is trying to get into the home page — trying to, but they’re getting blocked.” Read More

West Virginia: Russians Want to Hack Your Election? Call Out the National Guard | Bloomberg

When floods swept through West Virginia polling places during the 2012 presidential election, the National Guard came to the rescue with tents and electrical connections. For the state’s congressional primaries next month, the Guard will be on the lookout for another disaster: Russian interference. West Virginia’s top election official, Republican Secretary of State Mac Warner, has embedded a member of the Air National Guard in his office to scour election networks daily. Short on funds and expertise, a number of Warner’s counterparts across the country are also tapping the Guard to bolster their cybersecurity before November’s midterms. Read More

West Virginia: Meet the guy paying for West Virginia to run an election on blockchain | StateScoop

Bradley Tusk is best known as the former political operative who invented lobbying for the sharing economy. He’s the guy who claims credit for turning hordes of Uber customers into city-hall picketers whenever the ride-hailing company objected to new taxi regulations in New York, Washington, or a half-dozen other cities. When states tried to crack down on fantasy sports websites that offer daily cash prizes, one of the biggest, Fanduel, hired Tusk to mobilize its user base to hit back at attorneys general. When a local government suggests that the the people who pick up home-improvement jobs through Handy should be classified as employees entitled to benefits, the app calls in Tusk to argue that those workers are independent contractors. … But Tusk’s financial backing and the Warner family’s enthusiasm shouldn’t be taken as proof that elections can be conducted securely over the internet, says Duncan Buell, a computer science professor at the University of South Carolina who focuses on voting systems and election integrity. “I am strongly opposed to electronic voting, and I think the whole notion of internet voting is completely nuts,” Buell says. “There are a number of issues that come up. The first is authentication. How do you verify who’s at the other end?” Read More

West Virginia: Secretary of State tests secure mobile voting app for military personnel | The Hill

West Virginia is testing a new secure mobile voting application to help active-duty military members vote in the upcoming May primary election. Secretary of State Mac Warner (R) announced the pilot program on Wednesday afternoon. It will initially be limited to military voters and their spouses and children who are registered to vote in Harrison and Monongalia counties. However, the state plans to expand the program to all 55 counties in the upcoming November general election if the pilot proves successful.  Read More

West Virginia: Redistricting bill sent to House floor without independent commission | Charleston Gazette-Mail

A House of Delegates committee sent a bill to the floor Wednesday that would change the factors legislators use when drawing political district lines after each decennial census. The bill does not, however, create an independent commission to handle the redistricting process, as had been the original reason for drafting the updated House Bill 2383. Delegate Mike Pushkin, D-Kanawha, introduced an amendment to the bill that would have formed an independent commission. His amendment was essentially a reincarnation of a draft that a subcommittee killed last week. His amendment failed on a party-line vote. Read More

West Virginia: House passes single-member district bill; subcommittee reviews redistricting bill | Charleston Gazette-Mail

The West Virginia House of Delegates passed a bill Monday that could fundamentally alter the chamber’s political and electoral landscape. House Bill 4002 would nix the state’s reliance on multimember districts, where residents in certain areas vote for more than one delegate, yielding more than one winner. Following the decennial census, the bill would compel the Legislature to draw 100 single-member districts. In West Virginia’s 67 House districts, 11 of those districts have two members, six districts have three members, two districts have four members, and one district has five members. The vote passed 72-25. Of the 25 “no” votes, only three came from delegates who represent single-member districts: Phillip Diserio, D-Brooke; Ed Evans, D-McDowell; and Isaac Sponaugle, D-Pendleton. Fifty-three delegates serve in multimember districts. Read More

West Virginia: Election redistricting bill goes to House subcommittee | Charleston Gazette Mail

West Virginia House of Delegates Judiciary Committee Chairman John Shott, R-Mercer, established a subcommittee Wednesday to rework a bill that would create an independent commission to draw voter redistricting lines following the decennial census. In previous years, legislators have used updated information from the census to redraw their own district lines. House Bill 2383, sponsored by Delegate John Overington, R-Berkeley, puts together an independent redistricting commission, to bar politicians from picking and choosing their voters. However, the text of the bill does not spell out any specifics regarding who would serve on this commission, how they would be appointed or who — if anyone — would pay for it. Read More

West Virginia: Judiciary committee passes single-member redistricting plan to House floor | Charleston Gazette Mail

The West Virginia House Judiciary Committee sent a bill to the chamber floor Monday designed to reorganize the state into 100, single-member House districts during the decennial redistricting process. During the debate, the committee also voted down an amendment to the bill that would have compelled the Legislature to appoint an independent, nonpartisan committee to handle the redistricting, which is typically executed by legislators themselves. The bill passed on a party-line vote of 16 to 8, with Democrats in the minority. Delegate John Overington, R-Berkeley, sponsored the single-member redistricting plan, House Bill 4002, which would fundamentally change the electioneering mechanics of several House districts, especially those in urban pockets of the state, starting in 2022. Read More