Election Officials Gear Up For Primaries

By: Doug Brown / Suzie Gilbert Email
By: Doug Brown / Suzie Gilbert Email
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- Officials are gearing up for the primary elections, the first under the new voter ID law. They want you to be prepared as you head to the polls.

Shawnee County Election Commissioner Elizabeth Ensley Deiter is predicting a lower-than-average voter turnout, at 31 percent. She says the numbers are neck-and-neck with the turnout in 2008.

Signs are posted to remind you not to forget your required photo ID at the polls. But if you do, you can still vote.

"Go ahead and vote a provisional ballot. Then they can bring their ID to the election office and show it prior to the board of canvassers meeting and their ballot will be counted," Ensley Deiter said.

Residents can only vote for the party in which they're registered. Because of that, political leaders say they've seen hundreds of people temporarily switch their affiliations, specifically Democrats, so they can boost numbers for moderate Republicans in counties with contested senate races.

Shawnee County consolidated its voting locations, so you might have a new polling place.

"People don't like to have their polling places changed, but we send out all new registration certificates, so make sure you look at them so you know where you're voting," Ensley Deiter said.

You can also check the Kansas Secretary of State's website or call 800-262-VOTE.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach says he'll be monitoring the elections at different polling places. Look for team election coverage on WIBW-TV, including live reports from state and local races and up-to-the-minute results on air and online.

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