Turnout high as voters came in focused

Published 1:39am Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Voter turnout in Selma was not only strong at the start of the day, but it remained so as an estimated 47 percent of registered voters cast a ballot in Tuesday’s election.

In one polling location, The Christian Outreach Alliance, located on J.L. Chestnut Boulevard, in Ward 3, poll workers saw early on an average of one voter every minute since the location opened at 7 a.m.

“There has been, overall, I’d say a bigger turnout than last time,” poll inspector Jacque Johnson said. “We think that is wonderful.”

Despite some confusion experienced by voters on where exactly they were supposed to vote, the turnout has remained strong and is expected to stay strong throughout the day.

The Times-Journal met with some of the voters Tuesday as they exited the polls, not asking who they voted for, but rather what they looked for in a candidate and the factors they used in reaching their ultimate choices.

Most said it was an easy decision when deciding who to vote for.

Frank Cothran attributed his decision to “my love for Selma” and his want for the city to be respected.

Others said they voted just because they always vote.

“I just vote always, I’m interested in the people who are running,” said Herman Whitt. “I look at what has happened with the city and how the finances have been spent and that had a lot to do with how I voted.

“I think the one I voted for was worthy of being elected to the position for what they’ve done and the things that they are doing,” Whitt added. “I just want to make sure their good work continues.”

For others, it was a decision based on specific issues, like education.

“I think because we got a new [high] school it changed a lot of things,” said Debra Stubbs, referring to the recent opening of the new Selma High School. “We need some changes because for some of us parents, it’s had for us to get by.”

Selma Police Department’s Lt. John Brock, who managed the department’s patrols of polling places, said his officers had few to deal with during the day.

Dallas County Board of Registrars member Lola Sewell said her office dealt with a wide-range of issues Tuesday, most tied to the recent redistricting in Selma and those voters who had — for one reason or another — been moved to an inactive voter list.

— Times-Journal staff writer Ashley Johnson contributed to this report.

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