Record Voter Turnout Can Impact Staffing, Equipment For Future Elections

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TUPELO,MISS. (WCBI) – Record voter turnout was reported across the nation, state and the region for the midterm elections.

The day after the midterms, Lee County Circuit Clerk Camille Roberts Dulaney was meeting with her staff.  With both senate seats on the ballot, along with chancery and circuit court races, Dulaney was expecting strong turnout, but the numbers even caught her by surprise.

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“Normally we only see this kind of turnout in presidential races,” Dulaney said.

Fifty three percent of registered Lee County voters cast ballots.  Although lines were long at virtually all 36 precincts , they moved swiftly.  Dulaney says some voters had to fill out affidavits if they had moved, and didn’t notify her office.

“If you have moved, please notify us, call us, we will mail you a form, or you can go on the Secretary of State’s website, unless you notify us of your move, we do not know,” she said.

High voter turnout can also have a big impact on how the county budgets for poll workers, equipment and machines  for future elections.

“If we have this kind of turnout next year, I will put in the budget for more equipment and more machines, we’ve got new equipment and we are so proud to have it, we could use more, but the equipment was expensive and we’re trying to buy it where we can afford it,” Dulaney said.

While having the latest technology is a plus, Dulaney made sure to thank her staff for the hard work and long hours.

“If you tried to call my office yesterday, we probably took in about 10,000 phone calls, I have three full time employees that work elections, I have sixteen full time employees as the circuit clerk, but only three work in the election department,” she said.

Once affidavits are counted and reported, Dulaney and her staff will start getting ready for runoffs, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

Dulaney encourages anyone who needs to vote absentee in the runoffs to call her office as soon as possible to get their ballot.

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