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Slow, steady voting reported throughout Central Florida

Voters are hardly flocking to polls but supervisors of elections throughout Central Florida are saying the presidential primary flows have been steady and headed toward turnouts in the 40-50 percent range of eligible voters.

There have been no serious lines and just a few technical glitches in Seminole and Orange counties, all minor and taken care of in short order, and no problems reported in Osceola or Lake counties, the supervisors reported.

Perhaps more so than in any previous election, early voting and absentee voting may be a big part of what is happening. By midmorning traffic was slow at most polling places.

In Seminole, for example, early and absentee balloting have nearly doubled the rates for the 2008 presidential primary, which was the last in which both parties had contested primaries. Through Monday, Seminole had received 29,576 absentee ballots and 23,074 early votes from Republicans and Democrats combined. [The county also has received a few hundred more votes from independent voters who can vote on a couple of municipal charter initiatives.]

Consequently, Seminole Supervisor of Elections Mike Ertel projected a 40 percent turnout even though walk-up voting was pretty light in the early-morning rush.

“I think people are really excited about mail ballot and early voting,” Ertel said. “They’ve chosen that as their major method of voting.”

Written By

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at scott@floridapolitics.com.

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