Small turnout expected in midstate for runoffs

pramati@macon.comJune 5, 2014 

ElectionDay

Ballot liaison Dianne Brannen hands early election results to elections monitor Lillie Evans at the Bibb County Board of Elections on May 20.

JASON VORHEES — jvorhees@macon.com Buy Photo

With voter turnout in the midstate fairly low during last month’s primary races, elections officials in Bibb and Houston counties aren’t expecting to see a huge influx of voters for next month’s runoff election.

In Houston County, voters will at least have a few local races to decide on July 22 in addition to the runoffs for state school superintendent and the Republican race for the U.S. Senate seat.

Only 16.2 percent of Houston County voters -- just over 12,000 in all -- voted in the primary. Houston voters will decide runoffs for two school board seats in a nonpartisan race: Sheila L. Ashley and Hoke Morrow for the Post 6 seat; and Tannya T. Duncan and Bryan Upshaw for the Post 7 seat.

That’s in addition to the statewide races. On the Republican side, Jack Kingston and David Perdue are both vying for the right to face Democrat Michelle Nunn in the U.S. Senate race to replace Saxby Chambliss.

Also, voters will decide between Mike Buck and Richard Woods on the Republican side for the state school superintendent’s seat. Alisha Thomas Morgan and Valarie Wilson are vying for the same seat on the Democratic side.

There are no local seats in the runoff in Bibb County, which had 22,107 voters in the primary, about 26 percent of registered voters in the county. Bibb voters will have a say in the U.S. Senate and state school superintendent contests.

Elections officials have said voters who chose a specific party in the primary can only vote for that party’s races in the runoff. So, for example, someone who cast votes in the Democratic primary last month can’t vote in the Republican runoff, and vice versa.

Early voting in both counties will take place at the board of elections offices from June 30 to July 18, and voters can also make requests for absentee ballots.

To contact writer Phillip Ramati, call 744-4334.

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