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Runoffs off to a slow start at the polls

December 3, 2018

Just under 4 percent of Floyd County’s eligible voters cast early ballots in the statewide runoff election set to be decided Tuesday.

All 25 local precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The contests are for secretary of state — between Republican Brad Raffensperger and Democrat John Barrow — and the Public Service Commission seat sought by Democrat Lindy Miller and Republican incumbent Chuck Eaton.

None of the candidates received the more than 50 percent needed to win their election outright on Nov. 6.

Residents may vote in the runoffs even if they didn’t vote in the general election, as long as they were registered by the Oct. 9 deadline.

Elections Technician Vanessa Waddell said the office has been fielding a lot of calls for information. Voters can check their status and polling place online at the Georgia My Voter website.

About 30 percent of Floyd’s 52,475 registered voters showed up during the three weeks of early voting leading up to the November election, where turnout ended up at 57.79 percent.

Raffensperger was the local favorite in the secretary of state race, with 20,675 votes equal to just under 70 percent of the total cast in the race. Eaton also easily won Floyd County, pulling 20,575 votes.

The runoffs are expected to draw far fewer voters.

So far, just 2,045 county residents have participated, either in person or through absentee ballots, according to the website GeorgiaVotes.com.

The creator of the site uses a program that draws data from several reports posted by the secretary of state’s office. Of those who have already voted, 85.1 percent are white, 50.3 percent are male and 60.5 percent are age 65 or older.

About 15 percent of the early voters in the runoff did not vote in the previous midterm election, in 2014, according to the GeorgiaVotes data.

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