Large Voter Turnout Expected for Primaries

Harris County election officials are bracing for a large voter turnout for the Texas Primaries. More than a half-million voters could cast ballots in the Democratic and Republican races. Houston Public Radio’s Jack Williams reports.

It’s been a while since Texas has had this much clout in a presidential election, and voters are ready to take advantage of it. Projections indicate up to 450,000 Democrats and 150,000 Republicans could cast ballots. Harris County Clerk Beverly Kaufman says voters should bring their new salmon-colored registration cards to the polls.

“You must go to the precinct where you are registered to vote on actual election day. Provisional ballots will be provided to those folks where there’s a question about their registration. But if the registrar determine that you’re trying to vote in a precinct that’s not yours, your vote won’t count. Or if you didn’t even register at all. So hopefully, help us help you have a smooth experience on election day. Bring your registration card with you.”

More than 10,000 e-Slate electronic voting machines have been set-up at polling places across the county. Election judges and other officials have gone through extra training to handle the large turnout.

“Keep in mind that this is a double election. There are two elections going on. While you could go to early voting and vote either ballots, you have to go to the proper polling place in your precinct for either the Democratic or Republican primary. They may be in the same building, but they won’t be in the same room.”

Kaufman says residents who aren’t sure where to vote can check the web at HarrisVotes.com or call 713-755-6965. Voters can enter the precinct number printed on their registration cards to find out where to cast their ballots. Kaufman says because voters don’t register by party in Texas, the decision is made at the polling location.

“You choose your party affiliation by the primary you go and participate in. At that time, the election worker is going to stamp Democratic or Republican on your election card to indicated that’s how you voted. If you don’t bring your card, they also have certificates for you so that if you plan to come back and attend your precinct convention after the polls close you will have evidence that you are a member of the party by having voted in the primary.”

You can find more information about where to vote through a link on our website, KUHF.org.

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