Idaho voters headed to the polls Tuesday

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by KTVB.com

NWCN.com

Posted on May 24, 2010 at 9:19 PM

BOISE  -- Idaho's primary election day is Tuesday.

All state legislative seats and constitutional offices are on the ballot, as well as both U.S. House seats.  Sen. Mike Crapo is also up for re-election this year.

Some of the most highly anticipated races are the governor's race and Idaho's 1st Congressional District race.  And voters will be deciding the winner in these key races Tuesday.

Vaughn Ward is taking on state Rep. Raul Labrador for the chance to run against Democrat Walt Minnick in the fall.

A debate was held in our KTVB studios on May 17 between Ward and Labrador.  You can watch video clips from that debate by clicking the related links on the right-hand side of this article.

Republican Gov. Butch Otter is facing a challenge from veterinarian Rex Rammell and Ada County Commissioner Sharon Ullman.

Candidates spent Monday giving one final push to get their names out and positions out to the voters.

Idaho Secretary of State Ben Ysursa says these past few years have been the lowest voter turnout in decades, and this year only 26 percent of registered voters are projected to go to the polls Tuesday. 

It was been a busy Monday at the Ada County Elections Office where a steady stream of voters cast their ballot.

"We actually start about mid-March with the filing deadlines and go through, of course Election Day," said Jo Meta Spencer, Ada County Election Supervisor.

Just a day before the primary election early voters lined up Monday to exercise their right to vote.

"We've had a little over 1,500 people vote at our early voting site here at Benjamin and that was through Friday," said Spencer.

Ada County has also mailed about 6,600 absentee ballots.

In Canyon County, they've mailed 823 absentee ballots and 676 people have voted early there as of Friday.

Ysursa says this year’s numbers are on par for a typical primary election.

"We expect in our primary election about 26 percent of the registered voters to turn out," said Ysursa.

But Ysursa says with a closely watched race between Labrador and Ward, it could bring out a higher than expected turnout.

"Candidates and issues make turn out and I think we have a very close race in that First Congressional primary election in the Republican primary," said Ysursa.

KTVB Political Analyst Dr. Jim Weatherby says the lower voter numbers in a primary could affect the turn out in some of the races.

"With low voter turnout, you have surprises sometimes and it really comes down to which campaign is better organized to get their voters out and that's clearly true in this election," said Weatherby.

Polls open Tuesday at 8 a.m. and stay open until 8 p.m.

We will have your complete results on NewsChannel 7 on the Evening News at Ten and KTVB.COM.

Find voter information from the Idaho secretary of state at Idaho votes.

Ada County elections

Canyon County elections

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