Nearly 400 voters cast ballots at the Oconee County Board of Elections and Registration by the end of the first week of early voting yesterday, or nearly double the number who voted in the first week of advanced voting for the presidential primaries in March.
The 396 votes cast by the end of the day yesterday represents 1.8 percent of the 22,186 active registered voters in the county.
Ultimately, 11,503 people voted in the March presidential primaries (53.7 percent), won locally by Donald Trump on the Republican side and Hillary Clinton on the Democratic ballot.
Early voting for the May 24 primaries continues from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Board of Elections and Registration office, 10 Court Street, just opposite the Courthouse in downtown Watkinsville.
That office also will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 14, for early voting.
Past Presents Mixed Messages
In 2012, turnout in the primary for local, state and Congressional races was higher than it was for the presidential primaries.
|Early Voting Here|
In 2008, the reverse was the case.
In 2012, only 27.4 percent of the voters in Oconee County cast a ballot in the March 6 presidential primary, while 45.7 percent voted in the July 31 primary for local, state and Congressional races.
In 2008, 48.6 percent voted in the presidential primaries, while 36.4 percent voted in the July 15 primary for local, state and Congressional elections.
Republicans Have Local Races
Since Georgia does not have registration by party, voters can decide when they vote whether they want the Republican, Democratic or nonpartisan ballot.
Those who choose the Republican ballot will vote for the contested U.S. Senate seat, a contested Public Service Commission seat, and the contested local elections for the state Senate 46th District, Sheriff, Coroner, County Commission Post 1, County Commission Post 4, and Board of Education Chairman (Post 1).
The Republican ballot also contains noncontested races for U.S. Congressional District 10, state Representative from the 117th District or 119th District, Clerk of Superior Court, Tax Commissioner, County Commission Chairman, Board of Education Post 4 and Board of Education Post 5.
Republicans also will vote in the nonpartisan election for Justice of the state Supreme Court, for Judge for two seats on the Court of Appears, for Judge for two seats on the Superior Court of the Western Judicial Circuit, and for Judge of the Probate Court. None of these nonpartisan races is contested.
Democratic And Nonpartisan Ballots
Democrats will get to select a candidate for the U.S. Senate and the candidate for the District Attorney of the Western Judicial Circuit.
Only the U.S. Senate seat is contested.
Democrats will vote in the nonpartisan races for the Justice of the state Supreme Court, for Judge for two seats on the Court of Appears, for Judge for two seats on the Superior Court of the Western Judicial Circuit, and for Judge of the Probate Court.
Those who choose the nonpartisan ballot rather than the ballot of the Republican or Democratic parties will vote only in the nonpartisan judicial races.
As noted, none of these nonpartisan races is contested.
The Democratic ballot contains four nonbinding questions. The Republican ballot contains one question. The nonpartisan ballot contains no questions.
Voters can look at the three ballot options at the My Voter Page on the Secretary of State web site.
The full videos of those forums is available in those posts.
Regular voting takes place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on May 24.