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State Election Officials Reflect on Efforts to Safely Vote in a Pandemic


As the polls closed yesterday, Commissioner of Elections Chris Piper talked about the changes and challenges Virginia saw during this election.

The coronavirus pandemic and changes to early voting made the 2020 election much different than past elections in the Commonwealth. But voting went smoothly despite the challenges.

“We were reading headlines about whether we could hold elections in the midst of this pandemic," Piper said. "And I'm very proud of Virginia, and the rest of the country, for all that we did to get to today.”

Changes like a waived signature requirement, no excuse absentee voting, and a lengthy early voting period meant many Virginians could vote early. 2.75 million did. Anxieties over voter intimidation and cybersecurity were also largely unrealized. Last night’s reported results won’t be updated again until Friday. Piper advised voters to be patient until then.

“I also still want to caution again. Ballots will still be coming in through Friday at noon," he explained. "So those numbers will be updated after that.”

The State Board of Elections will certify the election results on November 16th.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.