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Primary Shows Low Voter Turnout

WGIL Newsroom . Local News 295

Tuesday’s primary election in Galesburg and Knox County showed a low voter turnout.

The 14.8-percent turnout, however, was slightly under what area election representatives expected for the primary.

This was the first election in which 17-year olds turning 18 before November’s General Election could cast a ballot.

Knox County Clerk Scott Erickson tells WGIL that sometimes the party ballot can dissuade people from voting.

“They’ll chose to sit out in the primary time so they don’t have to declare that party affiliation and then they’ll show back up again in November for the General Election where you don’t have to declare,” says Erickson.

In Galesburg, compared to the 2010 primary, voter turnout was 5 percent lower, but voting before Election Day was higher.

Galesburg Election Commission Executive Director Lisa Watson tells WGIL their offices began preparing right after last year’s consolidated elections.

“I think we’re always looking to provide additional training for our election judges and even different ways of doing it that could be more hands on,” says Watson.

More individuals voted on the Republican side than the Democratic side during this year’s primary in Galesburg with 2,542 ballots cast.