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Nearly 28,000 Virginians register to vote during extension

Posted at 12:30 AM, Oct 23, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-23 00:30:19-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia elections officials announced late Saturday that nearly 27,952 people registered to vote online following a judge's order to to extend registration after computer systems crashed Monday.

However, that number does not include in-person and mailed voter registration application, so the final number of people registered during the extension will rise, officials with the Virginia Department of Elections said.

The Friday 11:59 p.m. deadline came after a computer glitch Monday made it difficult for some people to register and locked others out of the website.

Ultimately a federal judge ordered Thursday for the state to extend the voter registration through Friday.

“As the last 36 hours shows, we have had an overwhelming demand from voters this year to register to vote or to update their registration status, and we are dedicated to ensuring that every eligible Virginian has the opportunity to participate in the November election,” Virginia Department of Elections Commissioner Edgardo Cortés said. “This is the first presidential election in which voters have been able to register or update their records online, and at times our technology has had a difficult time keeping up with this unprecedented demand."

Officials said improvements, including adding more memory to the primary server and another for server for information like polling place locations,  have been made to the the statewide voter registration system.

Click here to check your voter registration status, find your polling place, see what is on your ballot or apply for an absentee.

New voters may use provisional ballots

Chesterfield's registrar Larry Haake said registrar across the state will have to individually process all of those applications online, but they won't even receive the applications from the Virginia Department of Elections for an entire week.

Haake said that won't give them much time to ensure everyone is on the pollbook. A pollbook is the list volunteers check on election day before allowing you to cast your vote.

Still, he said if you are registered by 11:59 p.m. Friday night, which is when the extension ends, your vote will count.

"Key information for the voter. If they're not on the pollbook, they will have the opportunity to vote a provisional ballot, and if they're in the que and didn't make the pollbook, that ballot will be counted," Haake said.