NewsLocal News / April 8, 2014

Early Voting Kicks Off In Marion County

Sam Klemet
Early Voting Kicks Off In Marion County

Hoosiers can start casting ballots for the May Primary elections.

Early voting kicked off, Tuesday.

Besides the light conversation and laughter of a few poll workers such as Maya Garnett, it was pretty quiet on the voting front Tuesday afternoon in Marion County.

Garnett is helping out at the Clerk's office for the first time and says the slow start hasn’t hindered her excitement.

"It's fun because you get to see different people and everytime they walk out, I just feel like that is another person's voice who has been heard," she said.  "So, yeah, it's pretty cool."

In the first few hours, only about a dozen people submitted ballots.

In Marion county, about 645,000 residents are registered to vote, with about 15 to 18 percent of those who cast a ballot expected to do so early.

Having no presidential or gubernatorial races this year will likely limit voting turnout.

Clerk Beth White said that is normal, but there are other important decisions on the ballot.

"The people we are going to vote for this time around, our local officials, our state legislative officials, our members of Congress really do make decisions that impact our lives every day," she said.  "It's important for people to participate and to have a voice and say in their government at every level."

Lawrence Township resident Raynell Freeman is concerned with issues in her community, which is why she came out to vote early.

She is going on vacation in the coming weeks, so wanted to get the process done as soon as possible

"It was wonderful.  Very easy and very fast," she said of voting, Tuesday.  "I like it."

About 150 employees are helping with early voting in the county’s 600 precincts..

The final day to vote early is May 5 at noon.

Those who want an absentee ballot mailed to them must request one from the Clerk's office.