Absentee ballots below past elections

Published 12:42 am Sunday, November 6, 2016

NATCHEZ — The number of absentee ballots cast in Adams County for Tuesday’s election are well below the number of ballots cast in the past two presidential elections.

As of Saturday, numbers from the Adams County Circuit Clerk’s Office show that 1,387 absentee ballots have been cast in this year’s election.

Compared to the 1,810 absentee ballots that were cast in 2012 and the 2,002 absentee ballots that were cast in 2008, Election Commissioner Larry Gardner said he is not expecting a record turnout for this year’s election.

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“I don’t think the voter turnout will be that great,” Gardner said.

With the amount of attention the media had paid to the presidential race, Gardner said people might think the turnout will be high, but the number of absentee ballots suggests otherwise.

“The number of absentee ballots is all we have to go on,” Gardner said. “Anything else would be guessing.”

In 2012, 65-percent of the registered voters in Adams County cast ballots. The number topped 70-percent in 2008.

Gardner said the tone of the election may have something to do with the low number of absentee ballots. Although each presidential election has some negative aspects to it,

Gardner said the negativity in this election may be deterring people to vote.

“With all of the stuff going on in the election, it is hard to tell what will happen,” Gardner said. “But it has been a pretty negative election.”

With the surprises in this year’s election, Gardner said Tuesday’s turnout could be equally suprising.

“Who knows?” Gardener said.

The Adams County Circuit Clerk’s Office will continue to accept mail-in absentee ballots Monday.

Polls in Adams County will be open Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Polls in Concordia Parish will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.