Kentucky Primary Election 2022: Here's what you need to know

The election is May 17
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Posted at 7:54 PM, May 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-17 06:38:27-04

CINCINNATI — While Ohio just had its 2022 primary a few weeks ago, Kentucky is headed to the polls Tuesday for its 2022 primary.

Election day kicks off at 6 a.m. and runs until 6 p.m. As always, voters who are in line by 6 p.m. are eligible to vote at their designated polling location.

Early voting — which has ended — ran for just three days from May 12 to May 14. The period was previously extended to three weeks due to the pandemic as a temporary measure. This is the first traditional election in the state’s modern history with early, in-person voting. 

Kenton County Clerk Gabrielle Summe said she didn’t see a big wave of voters take advantage of the new early voting period. Turnout is typically lower during primary elections, but Summe said she’s concerned some voters may lack trust in the election process. 

“I think that there, nationally, is the little concern of people feeling that their votes don't count,” Summe said. “You hear so many things about fraud and all that, which in Kentucky, in Kenton County, I know is a platform for some and frankly, I don't believe that that is the case. I think that some people are just, they're starting to get disinterested.” 

Summe said ballot drop boxes are under surveillance. After people vote, she said Kenton County voting equipment is placed under surveillance too. She said equipment is never connected to the internet. Statewide, Kentucky is moving toward transitioning to universal paper ballots. 

What you need to know

Your polling location Tuesday depends on your county, and many churches, schools and city buildings will be set as polling places. You can check out the Kentucky Board of Elections website to find your designated polling location based on your area.

For those that want to prepare themselves ahead of going out to vote on Tuesday, sample ballots are available for each county via the Kentucky Secretary of State website.

Despite this, figuring out your polling location and reviewing ballots isn't important if you don't arrive with the correct identification to vote. Remember to bring a photo ID — such as a driver's license, college ID, military ID or a state-issued ID — to your polling place in order to vote. For those that can't obtain a photo ID, you can sign at your respective polling location and present other forms of identification, including a Social Security card, a credit or debit card, a Kentucky county approved card or any alternative photo ID. You can also have your identity confirmed by a personal acquaintance with an election official that will sign an affirmation.

Races to follow

U.S. Senate

The Democratic and Republican tickets for the senate seat will be voted on ahead of the general election in November. Incumbent Rand Paul will be fighting for his ticket again. Paul has held the seat since 2011.

Republican candidates:

  • Rand Paul
  • Arnold Blankenship
  • Val Frederick
  • Paul Hamilton
  • John Schiess
  • Tami Stainfield

Democratic candidates:

  • Charles Booker
  • Joshua Blanton Sr.
  • Ruth Gao
  • John Merrill

4th Congressional District

In Nothern Kentucky, the 4th Congressional District race will see incumbent Thomas Massie running for his Republican party ticket. Massie has held his position in the U.S. House since 2012.

Republican candidates:

  • Thomas Massie
  • Claire Wirth
  • George Foking Washington
  • Alyssa Dara McDowell

The Democratic primary was canceled and candidate Matthew Lehman will be advancing onto the Nov. 8 general election against whatever Republican candidate wins. Ethan Osborne will also be running in the general election as an independent candidate.

WCPO will have coverage of the Kentucky primary election throughout the day Tuesday.