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Early voting turnout could top record in Sullivan

J. H. Osborne • Oct 26, 2018 at 3:15 PM

BLOUNTVILLE — Turnout for early voting in Sullivan County is nearing 21,000 since it began Oct. 17, according to numbers released by the Sullivan County Election Commission at the end of the day Thursday. And that could mean a record turnout for early voting in the county for a midterm election, Sullivan County Administrator of Elections Jason Booher said a day earlier.

Early voting continues through Nov. 1 at three locations (listed below) in Sullivan County.

“Voter turnout for the Nov. 6, 2018, election has increased significantly in comparison to recent midterm elections,” Booher said Wednesday. “In fact, current numbers indicate we may witness a record turnout for a midterm election. It is important to understand that one election cannot directly be compared to another based upon a single factor. Contested races on the ballot, amount of advertising dollars being spent on campaigns, and the political climate are just a few of the factors that should be considered.”

Last comparable election?

“It should be noted that this is the first midterm election since 1994 in which both the office of U.S. Senate and governor are on the ballot without an incumbent candidate for either office,” Booher said. “One additional factor to note is that 1994 was the first election in which early voting was offered in Tennessee.”

Booher provided the following numbers for comparison of turnout through the halfway point of early voting on Wednesday, when turnout reached 18,670:

November 2016 (a presidential election year): 24,604

November 2014 (a midterm year): 5,577

November 2012 (a presidential election year): 18,930

November 2010 (a midterm year): 9,338

At the end of the day Thursday, Booher reported turnout in Sullivan County totaled 20,874 — with six days left to vote early in person.

SULLIVAN COUNTY EARLY VOTING LOCATIONS

• Sullivan County Election Commission, 3258 Highway 126, Suite 103, Blountville.

• Kingsport Civic Auditorium, 1550 Fort Henry Drive.

• National Guard Armory, 611 Bluff City Highway, Bristol, Tennessee.

Hours at all three Sullivan County locations are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mondays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.

(A sample ballot is available for Sullivan County voters at www.scelect.org.)

 

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