Runoff Day is here - will the voters be there?

By Justin Boron

Weather and "what's on the ballot" are the two factors that will likely decide voter turnout for the primary election runoffs scheduled today, said Annie Bright, the Clayton County director of elections and registration.

Bright couldn't say if voters would come out in droves or skip the polls completely.

But she did say that in her experience, runoffs tend to have a smaller turnout than regular primaries.

About 32,000 turned out for the July 20 primary. There are about 120,000 registered voters in Clayton County.

"Elections are things you just can't predict," Bright said.

If weather is a pivotal indicator of turnout, then the National Weather Service may have some influence over how many people show up to vote, predicting a partly cloudy day with a 30 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms in the afternoon.

Bright also speculated that decreased publicity of the elections since the July 20 primary could put a damper on turnout as well.

In any case, the polls are ready with voting booths in place, she said.

The runoffs stem from July 20 primaries in which a candidate did not receive 50 percent plus one vote.

Five runoff elections local to Clayton County will be held along with the statewide Democratic primary runoff between Cliff Oxford and Denise Majette for the U.S. Senate.

The school board runoffs are for the District 2, District 5, and District 7 seat.

Incumbent Nedra Ware faces Lois Baines Hunter for the District 2 seat.

Incumbent Barbara Wells is in a runoff with Wendell Rod Johnson.

Carol Kellam faces David Ashe in a runoff for the District 7 seat in which Kellam took only five more votes than Ashe in the July 20 primary. Kellam is a current school board member, appointed by the board.

The County Commission seat for District 3 pits Wole Ralph and Charles H. Davis.

The District 74 state House of Representatives runoff includes Roberta Abdul-Salaam and George Jeburk.