A cut cable has shut down Virginia’s statewide online voter registration system, and it couldn’t have come at a worse time.
Not only is Tuesday the final day for online registration in the state, early in-person voting is also underway. The system has implications for both: With the registration system, known as VERIS, currently on the fritz, in-person voters will have to cast provisional ballots because poll workers are unable to check them in.
The statewide voter registration system is currently DOWN. This means that any voter coming to vote early in-person can not be checked in on the poll books & will only be able to vote a provisional ballot.
We will let you know when the system is back up & running.
— County of Albemarle (@AlbemarleCounty) October 13, 2020
The State Voter Registration System, VERIS, is experiencing a statewide outage. Any voter who wishes to vote early, in-person, can not be checked in on the poll books, and will only be able to vote a provisional ballot. https://t.co/hZWIbFvXDc
— Fluvanna County, VA (@FluvannaCounty) October 13, 2020
The outage was caused by a cut fiber in Chester, Virginia, according to WUSA9.
Technicians are on site and working to repair; updates will be provided as work progresses.
— VA Dept of Elections (@vaELECT) October 13, 2020
In-person and mail-in voter registration are still available Tuesday, but the deadline for submitting in-person registration forms is 5 p.m., while mailed-in registration forms must be postmarked by Tuesday.
Virginia is on pace to break turnout records, with early in-person voting emerging as a widely used option even as absentee voting has also surged in the pandemic.
As of Friday, 887,000 Virginians had voted early in person, a number that amounts to nearly a quarter of all the ballots cast in the state in the 2016 election.