Few turn out for Tuesday’s election

Published 10:02 am Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Low voter turnout marked Tuesday’s election as less than 40 percent of registered voters headed to the polls.
When all the votes were counted, 11,393 residents cast ballots, equalling 36.14 percent of the number of registered voters in the county. A total of 7,141 people voted on election day and 4,252 voted either through early voting or by way of absentee ballot.
“It went good,” Administrator of Elections Tracy Harris said of the election day activities. “I can’t believe tonight went so smoothly.”
Many of the precincts reported quick voting times, but the West Side and Happy Valley precincts experienced lines throughout the day. West Side saw the highest percentage of voter turnout with 47.07 percent of the registered voters in that precinct voting. At Happy Valley, 850 voters came out on Tuesday, the highest number of any of the county’s 22 precincts.
The lowest voter turnout was at Harold McCormick precinct, where only 27.6 percent of voters turned out.
Voting at the precincts went smoothly, Harris said, noting problems were encountered with a couple of voting machines, but those were quickly replaced and the votes were retrieved.
After the votes were in Tuesday night, Harris said election workers had to begin canvassing ballots for votes cast in the governor’s race. Typically, canvassing of the ballots takes place the day after the election, but Harris said the state had requested canvassing of the votes for governors be conducted on election night.
Voters in Tennessee had four proposed constitutional amendments to consider during the election. For any of the amendments to be approved, they would need a majority of “yes” votes from more than half the total number of people who vote in this year’s governor’s race.
Because there was a certified write-in candidate in the governor’s race, Harris said the votes had to be canvassed on election night to determine how many countable votes had been cast so the state election commission could make a determination if the proposed amendments passed. Harris said 18 write-in votes had been cast in the governor’s race in Carter County, but added not all of those may count.

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