- Associated Press - Saturday, July 12, 2014

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - Early and absentee voting has started for Vermont’s upcoming primary election on Aug. 26.

Secretary of State Jim Condos said Friday that any registered voter may request a ballot from their town clerk by phone, mail or in person.

“Early voting is a great way to make sure that you have an opportunity to vote. Vermonters are busy people and getting to the polls on Election Day doesn’t fit everyone’s schedule - early voting is a chance to guarantee you make your voice heard,” Condos said.

The deadline to register to vote is Aug. 20 at 5 p.m. All early and absentee ballot requests must be submitted by 5 p.m. or close of the town clerk’s office on the day before Election Day, Condos said.

Among the primary races, Republican gubernatorial candidate Scott Milne faces Emily Peyton and Steve Barry for the party’s nomination to challenge incumbent Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin in November. Three Republicans - Mark Donka, Donald W. Nolte and Donald Russell - will also square off in the primary for a chance to unseat U.S. Rep. Peter Welch, a Democrat, who also faces a challenge from Liberty Union candidate Matthew Andrews.

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