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Voter Turnout in County Reaches Almost 32 Percent

Clinton & McCain pocket most votes during presidential preference primary
Friday, February 6, 2008, C-T

The weather conditions in Chillicothe were at best, less than ideal, but that didn't stop registered voters from making their voices heard yesterday (Tuesday) at the polls during the presidential preference primary.

According to Livingston County Election Authority Kelly Christopher slightly under 32 percent of the county's registered voters cast ballots during Super Tuesday, a tally much higher than the 21 percent she had predicted earlier. "I knew we were going to have more than what I had predicted by the time we were done with absentee ballots," Christopher explained. She added that her office received 176 absentee ballots - three times more than the amount of absentee ballots cast during the last presidential preference primary four years ago (57).

The reason for the increase in voter turnout, Christopher says, may have to do with more voter interest this time around. "I think voters wanted to be heard," Christopher said. "I think that they realized that in order to impact their lives, they needed to get out and make their voice heard and that's what I think we saw yesterday," she said.

In Livingston County there were more Democrat ballots cast than Republican. Specifically, there were 1,584 Democrat ballots cast to 1,255 Republican. There were three Libertarian votes cast as well.

Most Democrat voters gave the nod to Hillary Clinton (948) while her rival, Barack Obama pocketed 550 Democrat votes cast in the county. There were 68 votes cast for John Edwards, three each for Bill Richardson and Christopher J. Dodd, and one a piece for Ralph Spelbring, Dennis J. Kuchinich and Joe Biden. Nine uncommitted votes were cast. (According to Christopher, a voter casts an uncommitted vote when he or she wants to vote for a certain party but is uncommitted to a certain candidate).

On the Republican side, John McCain received the most votes (488) from Livingston County Republicans. However, he was closely followed by Mike Huckabee, who earned 426 votes. Mitt Romney earned 248 votes, followed by Ron Paul with 75, Rudy Giuliani, 8, Fred Thompson, 5, and four votes were uncommitted.

There were three Libertarian votes cast in Livingston County yesterday with one vote each going to Daniel Imperato, Steve Kubby and Dave Hollist. The county's 2nd Ward (which also has the most registered voters in the county) saw the most Democrat votes cast at 270. On the Republican side, more GOP votes were cast in the county's 1st Ward - 238.

Christopher said that the presidential preference primary went smoothly in Livingston County. from start to finish. "We hadn't had an election for almost a year (since April 2007) and I think everything went great," she said, adding, "the election judges did an outstanding job and the weather held off long enough."

Preparations for Presidential Preference Election

Friday, February 1, 2008, C-T

Preparations are being made for next Tuesday's presidential preference primary election as Barbara Duncan, a deputy county clerk in the Livingston County clerk's office, gathers materials. So far, 110 absentee votes have been cast. Election authority Kelly Christopher reports absentee voting hours on Saturday will be held at the county clerk's office from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Polls will open Tuesday from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m. at all 11 voting precincts.

C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

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Livingston County Courthouse
700 Webster Street
Chillicothe, MO 64601