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Voter turnout sluggish
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It started painfully slow, picked up steam around lunch, and finished with a mild rally.
Voter turnout for yesterday’s election could be described as moderate at best. In Warren County, ---- people voted during this election cycle. That includes 2,852 people who voted early.
At the Westwood Church of Christ precinct, voter turnout mirrored activity around the county. There were busy spurts mixed with regular droughts.
“This is about what I expected,” said Jerry Davenport, a poll worker at Westwood. “There aren’t a lot of local races to draw interest.”
The election for General Sessions Judge and Property Assessor were the only two countywide races. Three of the six seats on the School Board were also up for grabs, but those races were limited to certain precincts.
At the Civic Center precinct, 50 people voted before noon, but there was somewhat of a rush around lunch. Poll workers there said the traditional push comes late in the day between 4 and 7 p.m.
“There haven’t been any problems yet,” said poll worker Doyle Speaks, who added this is the second election in Tennessee where it’s required to show a photo ID to vote. “Most people tell us they like the new photo ID law.”
When it comes to negative feedback, Speaks said it’s common for people to be confused when they are told they can only vote in the Republican or Democratic primary. He said voters often want to vote for candidates in both.
“People think they should be able to vote for whoever they want, regardless of primary, but it doesn’t work that way,” said Speaks.
Tim Pirtle was campaigning for his wife, Mary Little Pirtle, on Main Street yesterday. He said he expected voter turnout to be mild considering the early voting numbers.
“The final count is usually about double the early voting numbers so I’m expecting voter turnout to be a little more than 5,000,” said Pirtle.
The county has 21 voting precincts. Polls were open yesterday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.