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Voting begins in Presidential Primary
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Avery Bryant, 6, is planning on becoming a proud voter when she’s old enough. Until then, she decorates herself with stickers during early voting.

Early voting began Wednesday and started at a slow pace as people trickled in to use their right to vote in hopes of shaping the future of America.

Early voting for the Presidential Preference Primary runs until Tuesday, Feb. 25 with Election Day taking place Tuesday, March 3.

In McMinnville, early voting is held at Warren County Administrative Offices on Locust Street. Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday thru Friday, and 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday. There will be no early voting Monday, Feb. 17, due to Presidents Day.

On Wednesday, 97 people voted, 84 voters came on Thursday and Friday’s number was 106. 

“Early voting has been extremely slow so far,” says Susie Davenport, administrator of elections for Warren County Election Commission.

“So far it’s been slow compared to 2018, but a lot of that has to do with the fact it’s a primary election,” adds Andy Goble, a worker at the early voting location. “I’m sure November will be very busy.”

The Presidential Preference Primary features President Trump and his challengers in the Republican Primary. The Democratic Primary features the long list of candidates hoping to face Trump in November.

Goble recommends early voting due to the convenience it provides and claims it currently takes less than three minutes to complete voting.

“We see about half of voters come in early to vote. They enjoy the convenience and the ability to get in and out of the location easily,” said Davenport. “We’re strictly here to make it more convenient for the voters.”

Warren County resident Shari Newby was one of the early voters at the Administrative Offices on Friday. Newby’s son was in the Marine Corps for six years, and she believes it’s important to vote since her son fought for her right to do so. 

“I personally think it’s important to vote because your voice matters. If you want to have any say in how our government and country are run, then you have to go out and vote,” says Goble. “At least you can say you put your voice in. Since you’ve put your 2 cents in then you have the right to say how you want things done within our country and government.”

Tennesseans voting early, or on Election Day, must bring a valid photo ID to the polls. A driver’s license or photo ID issued by the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, by Tennessee state government, or by the federal government are acceptable even if they’re expired.