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Super Tuesday lets locals weigh in

Members of both parties can vote in this week’s election

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POSTED: March 5, 2012 9:26 a.m.

Georgia is among the 10 states holding presidential primaries and caucuses Tuesday, and local officials from both sides of the aisle are encouraging voters to make their voices heard.

“Everybody’s focusing on the Republican, but the primary is for both major parties,” said Liberty Democratic Committee secretary Sandy Burch. “It is called the presidential preference primary.”

Though Republican indecision has dominated the race this year, Burch said it’s important for Democrats to demonstrate support for their incumbent candidate, President Barack Obama.

Voters can cast their ballots between 7 a.m.-7 p.m. at their usual precincts, according to Liberty County elections supervisor Ella Golden. Voters must present one of six valid forms of ID: valid state or federal government-issued ID; Georgia driver’s license; U.S. passport; U.S. military photo ID; tribal photo ID; or a valid employee photo ID from any government branch, department, agency or entity of the U.S. government, Georgia or other entity in the state.

Because Georgia voters do not register along party lines, voters may vote once for either of the two major parties.
Liberty County Republican Party Chairman John Wood said he looks forward to seeing the “good fight” come to a unified end.

“This primary has been really strange. Starting from the Iowa straw poll to now, you have seen so many different trends,” Wood said.

A candidate needs 1,144 out of 2,224 delegates to win the nomination, Wood said. Another 424 delegates are up for grabs Tuesday.

Georgia’s 76 delegates will be awarded proportionally, according to Georgia Republican Party spokesman Chris Kelleher. The state is the fourth-largest in the country in terms of delegate numbers.

While most candidates have concentrated their in-state stumping visits to the metro Atlanta area, Gingrich held a rally Friday in Savannah, and a bus tour of women supporting Santorum will visit Savannah on Monday.

Though Mitt Romney has the lion’s share of delegates to date, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Ron Paul each have surged in different states.

Wood attributes the shifting support to schisms in the GOP that are rooted in degrees of ideology and social beliefs. But he said the true issue of concern is the economy, and the best way to address it is with a single candidate.

“Everybody’s trying to be that one person who will bring the entire Republican Party together, because that’s the only way that you will have victory in November,” he said.

In his role as chairman, Wood cannot endorse a candidate, but he predicts Romney will win Liberty County. He also does not want to predict for the state, though he foresees Peach State native Gingrich having a rough time in the race.

According to a poll Wood said he saw Thursday afternoon, Gingrich was down by 19 points.

“Gingrich should do alright in his home state, but making up 19 points by Tuesday? There’s just not many people who can do that,” he said.

Despite their political differences, Wood and Burch agree that it’s vital for citizens to become involved.

“I want to see people get out and be active, … and they’ve got to believe in their government,” Wood said.
“They just need to know that every vote counts,” Burch said. “People don’t get very interested in primaries, and that’s a shame.”

 

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