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Liberty County voters break turnout record
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Liberty County Chief Registrar Ella Golden spent Saturday morning checking express polls in preparation for Georgia's Presidential Preference Primary Tuesday. - photo by Andrea Washington / Coastal Courier
"My voters showed up and showed out," Liberty County Chief Registrar Ella Golden said, describing advanced voting week when participation reached an all-time high.
Liberty County voters showed up in record numbers to cast a total 1,510 ballots in advance of Georgia's presidential preference primary Tuesday, surpassing the 1,331 votes cast during advanced voting for Hinesville's mayoral runoff in December.
A streamlined process inside the Liberty County Voter Registration Office kept the daily flow of hundreds of voters moving swiftly throughout the week, although some employees joked Friday the crowds caused them to miss a few "chocolate breaks."
With the Democrat field narrowed down to Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama and the Republicans down to Govs. Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney, Sen. John McCain and Rep. Ron Paul, Golden attributed the turnout to voters' interest in a wide-open field.
"There is such an excitement and interest in this election that I have not really seen before," she said. "I've seen the young, the old, the middle-aged, white, black...even those who have not voted before have come out (to vote) because the interest has drawn them out."
Using advanced voting week as a barometer to estimate the number of residents that will vote Tuesday, the chief registrar said she is anticipating "another big turnout."
Golden also reiterated the need for residents going to the polls this week to bring the proper photo identification that must be shown to poll workers prior to voting.
Residents are required to show a valid state or federal government issued photo ID, active or expired Georgia Driver's License; federal, state, county or municipality employee photo ID, U.S. passport, military ID or tribal photo ID.
Voters without one of these forms of identification can pick up a free Georgia voter ID card from the voter registration office or any Georgia Department of Driver Services location. The voter ID cards will be available on the day of the primary.
To get a free voter ID card, citizens must provide a photo identity document or approved non-photo identity document that includes full legal name and date of birth, documentation showing the voter's date of birth, evidence that the applicant is a registered voter and documentation showing the applicant's name and residential address.
For more information on voting, ID requirements or how to obtain a free voter ID card, call the Liberty County Voter Registration at 876-3310.
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