High voter turnout expected

Published 1:05 am Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Local voter turnout in today’s general election is expected to range between 65 and 70 percent, Probate Judge Ben Bowden said Monday.

Today, polls will open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m., and Bowden said the biggest draw for voters is the presidential and vice-presidential race, where the incumbent Barack Obama and running mate Joe Biden are facing Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.

“It’s going to be a heavy turnout,” Bowden said. “Absentee ballot applications are right there with 2008 numbers, which was one of the largest election turnouts we’ve ever had in Covington County. There seems be a bit of enthusiasm on both sides for the presidential race, so that will push the number up.”

There are only four state races on the ballot with party opposition:

• U.S. Representative for the 2nd Congressional District, where incumbent Martha Roby, a Republican, is facing Democrat Therese Ford;

• Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, a race that features Roy Moore, a former chief justice and a Republican, and Bob Vance, a circuit judge from Jefferson County;

• Public Service Commission president, where the incumbent, Democrat Lucy Baxley, is facing fellow PSC member Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh, a Republican;

• State school board, District 1 seat, where Herndon Inge III, a Democrat, is facing Republican Tracy Roberts.

All other local races, while on the ballot, have already been determined.

There are also 11 amendments on the ballot ranging from reauthorizing the Forever Wild Trust Fund to a local amendment that, if passed, would levy a law library fund fee as a court cost.

Bowden said voters should pick their voting time carefully as to avoid waiting in line to cast a ballot.

“It’s the most crowded right before work, during lunch and right after work,” he said.