Photo by Elaine Rackley
Once inside the Clayton County Elections and Registration office, people remained in line to wait until a voting machine was available.
JONESBORO — The line snaked around the historic Clayton County Courthouse as residents took part in early voting Wednesday. The apparent emphasis on the presidential election disturbed outgoing Clayton County Sheriff Kemuel Kimbrough, who wondered aloud where this kind of turnout was when the sheriff’s election was taking place on Aug. 21.
“People need to start thinking more analytically and critically about how to vote,” said Kimbrough, who was defeated in the Democratic primary by former Sheriff Victor Hill, 12,931 votes to 11,160. “For only 25,000 people to show up for the primary election, compared to people voting today, that’s not good.”
Kimbrough emphasized that politics is local.
“Voters need to think about who they are electing, people who set the tax rate, people who make decisions about which roads will be paved, and people who protect them,” he said. “When you dial 911, you don’t get the governor’s mansion or the White House.”
Kimbrough said when he leaves office Jan. 1, he plans to spend more time with his family and make more money working in the private sector.
“The reality is that Clayton County’s future hinges on this election,” he said. “Holding an elected office should be about sacrifice, of your personal gain. Far too many times in Clayton County that has not been the case. Why are people voting for people who are not employed or for people who just moved here? We wouldn’t hire them for a job, why would we vote for them?”