Early Voting Turnout Tops 26,000

By Bill Dries

Early voting turnout in advance of the May 6 Shelby County primaries topped 26,000.

Through Thursday, May 1, the last day of the early voting period, 26,298 citizens cast ballots. Thursday was also the heaviest day for turnout of the voting period, with 7,878 early voters and lines at some of the 21 polling locations.

Turnout is lower than the 31,000 early voters in the same election cycle four years ago for most of the same offices. By percentage, the turnout was 4.9 percent of Shelby County’s 533,579 voters.

Among early voters, 71.1 percent cast their ballots in the Democratic primaries, with the remaining 28.9 percent in the Republican primaries.

More than half, 60.9 percent, were women.

By race, 59.5 percent were African-American and 26.2 percent were white. The remaining 24.3 percent were listed as “other,” which includes voters who did not indicate their race on voter registration forms.

Election day polls are open Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.