VOL. 131 | NO. 43 | Tuesday, March 1, 2016
Tennessee Primaries Go To Voters
By Bill Dries
After a flurry of weekend campaigning in which four of the presidential contenders, three Republicans and one Democrat, came through Shelby County looking for votes, the Tennessee presidential primaries will be decided Tuesday, March 1, at the polls.
The Tennessee presidential primaries top a short ballot on the Tuesday, March 1, election day in Memphis. Polls are open across Shelby County from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
(Daily News File/Andrew J. Breig)
Polling places in Shelby County are open Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The short ballot is topped by the Republican and Democratic presidential primaries.
The Republican primaries include the slate of state delegates to be awarded to contenders getting at least 20 percent of the statewide vote. Democrats use a pair of local conventions after the presidential primary to select and award their delegates.
The delegates are to the summer national political conventions where the two presidential nominees are formally selected.
The only other contests on the Tuesday ballot are the primaries for Shelby County General Sessions Court Clerk with the Republican primary already decided.
Republican nominee Richard Morton is running unopposed and advances to the August county general election ballot. He will meet the winner of the Democratic primary match-up between incumbent clerk Ed Stanton and challenger William Stovall.
Follow the election results after 7 p.m. @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols, with web stories at www.memphisdailynews.com once the early vote count is in and then when the final unofficial vote totals are in Tuesday evening.
Shelby County turnout in the Tennessee primaries has never been 40 percent or higher since the primaries were tied to delegate selection starting in 1972.
Early voting turnout in Shelby County was 43,543, higher by about 10,000 than the 2008 primaries – the last time an incumbent president was not seeking re-election.
Most of the early voters, 26,397, voted in the Democratic primary.
The turnout statewide was 385,653 including the Shelby County count. More of the early voters across the state voted in the Republican primary – 257,209.
Overall, Shelby County voter turnout in the 2012 Tennessee presidential primaries featuring President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign was 72,146 or 24.4 percent of the county’s 610,977 voters.
Shelby County turnout in 2008 with no incumbent president seeking re-election – early vote and election day – was 147,439 or 24.1 percent of the county’s 611,742 voters.