IBJNews

Voters turn out in light numbers for Indiana primary

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Voters turned out in light numbers at many polling sites across Indiana for Tuesday's primary, signaling what one state official said could be a shifting preference for early and absentee voting.

"We rebuilt the pyramids and recarved the Grand Canyon in our spare time," joked poll worker Dina Roberts, who saw only 147 voters in nearly 12 hours at her downtown Indianapolis polling site.

The low turnout could be due in part to the number of people who sought ballots early this year. More than 96,000 early and absentee ballots were issued statewide this year, up 35,000 from the 2006 midterm primary, said Jim Gavin, spokesman for the Indiana secretary of state's office.

"I think what you're seeing is people are moving toward absentee voting as a preference," Gavin said.

He said it was too early Tuesday evening to gauge overall voter turnout. About 19 percent of registered voters cast ballots in the 2006 primary, he said.

Election officials reported only minor problems.

Eight polling locations in Indianapolis did not open as planned by 6 a.m. Tuesday, said Angie Nussmeyer, a spokeswoman for Marion County's clerk. Some poll workers called in sick or failed to arrive, but all of the county's polling locations opened by 9 a.m., she said.

"Most of the issues have been standard problems with machines — inspectors not sure how to set them up, maybe setting them up in the wrong way," she said.

Delaware County Clerk Steve Craycraft in Muncie, about 40 miles northeast of Indianapolis, reported a few problems at polling sites with missing forms and absent poll workers but said it had been "fairly quiet."

Tuesday's key races included the highly contested Republican primaries for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by retiring Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh and the 13-way Republican contest for the 4th Congressional District seat being vacated by Republican Rep. Steve Buyer.

Eight Republicans were vying for the 8th District seat, which Democratic Rep. Brad Ellsworth decided to leave in order to run for U.S. Senate in November.

In the 8th District's Vanderburgh County, some voting machines arrived late and caused snags in opening polling places, county clerk Susan Kirk said. Despite the "mess" in getting machines to polling places, all machines were delivered and turnout was light, she said.

"We've just pretty well sat here and read books most of the day," Kirk said.

In northwestern Indiana's Lake County, where late returns in the 2008 presidential primary drew national attention, election director Sally LaSota reported only minor mistakes by poll workers.

Rev. Anthony L. Spanley from Holy Cross Church in Hamlet bucked the early voting trend and cast his ballot Tuesday. He said he always votes in both the primary and general elections.

"I just love the system. I can vote against them twice," Spanley said. "I try to get rid of all the people who raise my taxes."

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I am also a "vet" of several Cirque shows and this one left me flat. It didn't have the amount of acrobatic stunts as the others that I have seen. I am still glad that I went to it and look forward to the next one but I put Varekai as my least favorite.

  2. Looking at the two companies - in spite of their relative size to one another -- Ricker's image is (by all accounts) pretty solid and reputable. Their locations are clean, employees are friendly and the products they offer are reasonably priced. By contrast, BP locations are all over the place and their reputation is poor, especially when you consider this is the same "company" whose disastrous oil spill and their response was nothing short of irresponsible should tell you a lot. The fact you also have people who are experienced in franchising saying their system/strategy is flawed is a good indication that another "spill" has occurred and it's the AM-PM/Ricker's customers/company that are having to deal with it.

  3. Daniel Lilly - Glad to hear about your points and miles. Enjoy Wisconsin and Illinois. You don't care one whit about financial discipline, which is why you will blast the "GOP". Classic liberalism.

  4. Isn't the real reason the terrain? The planners under-estimated the undulating terrain, sink holes, karst features, etc. This portion of the route was flawed from the beginning.

  5. You thought no Indy was bad, how's no fans working out for you? THe IRl No direct competition and still no fans. Hey George Family, spend another billion dollars, that will fix it.

ADVERTISEMENT