Duval County Supervisor of Elections Jerry Holland told News4Jax that low voter turnout for Tuesday’s primary election isn’t unusual and that he expects a small turnout at the polls.
“We’re expecting about 21 percent, that’s about a percent less than four years ago,” said Holland.
There will also be some changes at the polls this year. Holland explained that there will be no more paper rolls to sign or requirement to get in line alphabetically. Now, voters will sign an electric poll book.
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“It’ll pull up your name from your driver’s license, and you’ll just sign a signature pad, and it’ll move you along a lot faster,” said Holland.
A new law is also making it harder for voters who cannot make it to their precinct to vote.
“Unless it’s some kind of an emergency and you can’t get to your polls, you’re required to go to your polls on election day,” said Holland.
News4Jax political analyst Jennifer Carroll said people shouldn't blow off the primary and assume that they’ll just show up for the election come November.
Carroll told News4Jax that every vote is important, even for smaller races. Carroll said the small race vote will impact everyone’s daily lives.
“There’s not going to be an opportunity in the November election to vote for this particular seat, your City Council, County Commission, School Board, Soil and Water,” explained Carroll.
The Supervisor of Elections office starts counting absentee ballots first.
“We are required to report those by 7:30 p.m. so you’ll really get a good indication, probably about 30 percent of the vote within the first half hour before the polls close,” said Holland.
Voters also need to remember their photo ID in order to vote and verify polling locations to make sure they are voting in the right place. Some polling locations have changed since the last election.