Early voting off to ‘pretty good’ start
by Joshua Sharpe
May 03, 2014 04:00 AM | 1886 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CANTON — The first week of early voting for the May 20 primary has gotten off to a somewhat slow start. But officials expect it to pick up.

As of late morning Friday, 567 people had come in to the Cherokee County Elections Office to cast their ballots for the many state, local and federal offices up for grabs, according to the elections office. Another 609 people requested ballots through the mail.

Kim Stancil, assistant director of Cherokee elections, said the turnout so far is “pretty good.”

“It’s been pretty steady,” Stancil said Friday. “It’s not great, but it’s pretty good for just the first week. It’ll pick up.”

Stancil said, historically, voting increases toward the end of early voting. This time, early voting will be finished May 16, the Friday before Election Day.

“A lot of people wait until that last week of early voting,” she said. “We have four satellite location open in other parts of the county. It’s more of a convenience thing. People in Woodstock don’t want to come to Canton.”

For the first two weeks of early voting, all ballots not done through the mail are cast at the elections office in downtown Canton.

The voters turning out — as is typical in Cherokee County — are overwhelmingly Republicans.

Of the 567 people to vote, only 45 asked for a Democratic ballot, according to the elections office. Only 31 of the 609 voters to ask for mailed ballots were Democrats.

The Democrats have no local elections to choose from on the ballot, though there are a number of poll questions in addition to the state and federal candidates to pick from. Democrats are being asked for their opinions on topics such as Georgia’s “Stand Your Ground” law, the Affordable Care Act, recreational marijuana sales and ethics reform.

On the Republican ballot, voters are being asked two questions.

They are: “Do you feel the Cherokee County Superintendent of Schools should be an elected position?” and “Do you feel that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act should fine United States citizens for not purchasing health care as mandated?”

The Republicans, of course, have the most choices to make in local races, with all Cherokee County candidates running for the GOP nomination.

Many of the races are also contested, with multiple candidates vying for all the available seats on the Cherokee County School Board and Board of Commissioners.

Early voting continues Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Cherokee Elections Office at 400 East Main St., Canton until May 9.

Voters will have one Saturday when they can cast their votes, May 10 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Advance voting is the week of May 12 to 16, from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.

For Election Day, on May 20, all county precincts will be open for voting from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Voters must vote at their assigned precinct on Election Day.

For more information on early voting or to see sample ballots, visit voter.cherokeega.com.

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