Early voting/registration ends Nov. 3

Published 6:40 pm Thursday, November 1, 2012

Almost 6k votes cast so far

Early voting in Polk County will end Saturday, Nov. 3 at 1 p.m. at three locations.

Voting can be done on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Polk County Board of Elections Office on the second floor of the Womack building in downtown Columbus, the Mill Spring Fire Department and the Green Creek Family Life Center.

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As of Thursday afternoon, 5,993 votes had been cast either by early voting or absentee ballots, according to the Polk County Elections Office.

Early voting began Oct. 18 and has seen one of the best turnouts in several years.

The 2008 election, which was the last presidential election, Polk County voted 7,850 total early votes, including one-stop and absentee.

So far this year, Republicans are leading in early votes by casting 2,175 of the total.

Democrats are right behind with 2,049 votes with Unaffiliated voters casting 1,761 earl votes and Libertarians casting eight total votes.

Of the total 5,9993 early votes so far, 5,395 have been early votes with the remainder begin absentee ballots.

This year’s voting machines have come with sensitivity. The N.C. State Board of Elections this year sent voter alerts which are posted at all three Polk County locations that say the touchscreen of the machines are sensitive and voters should check the summary at the end and carefully review the ballot to ensure it is accurate. The alert also directs voters to an attendance for assistance if needed.

The Bulletin received one complaint that one machine cast a wrong vote for the president, but the board of elections office has received no complaints regarding any problems this year. Any issues with machines should be filed in writing with the elections office.

Saturday, Nov. 3 is also the last day to register to vote as long as early voting is also done.

Polk voters have several local and state races this year besides the presidential election.

There are three seats open this year on the board of commissioners. Incumbents Renée McDermott (D) and Tom Pack (R) are running to keep their seats, challenged by newcomers Emily Bartlett (D), Russell Mierop (D), Michael Gage (R) and Keith Holbert (R). Current commissioner Cindy Walker did not seek re-election this year.

The clerk of courts position is also open, with acting clerk Pam Hyder (D) running against Marche Pittman (R). Hyder was appointed clerk following the retirement of former clerk Charlene Owens last year.

The other Polk County position up for re-election this year is register of deeds, with incumbent Sheila Whitmire (R) running unopposed.

North Carolina voters will choose several state positions.
Walter Dalton (D), Barbara Howe (L) and Pat McCrory (R) are running for N.C. governor; Linda Coleman (D) and Dan Forest (R) are running for lieutenant governor; Beth Wood (D) and Debra Goldman (R) are running for N.C. auditor and Walter Smith (D) and Steve Troxler (R) are running for commissioner of agriculture.
Other state races include Elaine Marshall (D) and Edward Charles Goodwin (R) for N.C. Secretary of State; June Atkinson (D) and John Tedesco (R) for superintendent of public instruction and Janet Cowell (D) and Steven L. Royal (R) for state treasurer.
Two Polk County residents are running for N.C. House and Senate seats this year.
Polk’s George Alley (D) is running against Chris Whitmire (R) for the N.C. House of Representatives seat for district 113. Polk’s Phil Feagan (D) is running against Ralph Hise (R) for the N.C. Senate seat for district 47.
Polk voters will choose between Patsy Keever (D) and Patrick McHenry (R) for U.S. House of Representatives, District 10.
For Polk’s judicial district 29B, district court judges Mack Brittain and Athena Brooks are running unopposed. Other district court seats are open, including a race between William Cathey and Emily Cowan for the seat currently held by David Fox and a race between Robin L. Bowen and Peter Knight for Knight’s seat.

Early voting can also be done today, Friday, Nov. 2 at the Polk County Board of Elections Office from 8:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. and at the Mill Spring Fire Department and Green Creek Family Life Center noon to 7 p.m.

Absentee ballots must be received by the Polk County Board of Elections office by Monday, Nov. 5 by 5 p.m.

Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 6 where all seven Polk polling places will be open from 6:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m.