AUGUSTA,Ga (WJBF) In this election Doris McClain was in the minority at least based on when she voted.
“When did you vote?”
“So you voted on election day.”
“Yes sir, she answered.
McClain wasn’t alone voting on Elections Day.
5 thousand voters went to the polls in Augusta on Tuesday but compared that to the 36 thousand who voted early, and another 45 hundred who voted by mail.
For an Augusta election this made history.
“A shift in what we’ve seen in Richmond County voters in that we had more voters for the first time ever voted ahead of Election Day then actually voted on Election Day,”
said Election Director Lynn Bailey.
Mike Lirett was one of those in the majority he voted before Election Day.
“It’s so much more convenient you know it just makes it easier,” he said.
“More and more people are voting advance now we don’t see if affecting the overall turnout of per say the same numbers of people are voting and they’re just spreading it out,” said Bailey.
But even with Augusta’s record early turnout we had fewer people voting Tuesday then in the 2008 and 2012
“We did,” said Bailey.
Beats me I don’t know we just had fewer people show up,” she said.
But they did show up for advance voting in record numbers but early voting costs money about 50 thousand dollars over the three week period.
“Whatever it costs to facilitate the process efficiently and accurately and get people in in a reasonable amount of time that’s what we’re shooting for and I think we accomplished it this time,” said Bailey.
Election officials say even with a record turnout for early voting polling places still have to be staffed Election Day which costs about 60 to 80 thousand dollars, but Bailey says the election office is putting fewer workers at the polls on election day due growing popularity of early voting.