Cobb Primary Turnout Highest in Nearly a Decade
One third of those registered to cast ballots participated in Tuesday's elections.
Cobb County’s voter turnout for the July 31 primary was the highest it’s been for a primary in nearly a decade.
“Anecdotally, I think it’s because of TSPLOST,” said Beth Kish, Cobb Elections' voting and registration manger. “A lot of people that we just came across were mentioning something about the TSPLOST.”
Voter turnout for the primary was 31.3 percent compared to 29 percent in 2004, 19.5 percent in 2006, 10.7 percent in 2008 and 22.5 percent in 2010, she said.
Of Cobb’s 389,052 registered voters, 124,715 cast ballots, though Kish said Cobb Board of Elections has yet to count the 300 or so provisional ballots and is still waiting to receive some ballots for overseas military ballots. These ballots will be counted Friday but aren’t expected to shape the outcome of any races.
“We haven’t had time to figure out how many, if any, are in particular races, so if something is close and there are enough provisional to make a difference in any race, we’ll do that when we get our eyes fully open this morning,” she said.
Kish acknowledged that it was a late night for the staff at Cobb Board of Elections. Cobb didn’t submit all its results to the Secretary of State until around 4 a.m. Wednesday.
“We were just so happy when the county turned green,” she said. “The green are the done ones. We were yellow for a long time.”
Kish said the delay wasn’t because of problems at the polls, but simply because counting the ballots took time.
“We had a lot of mail,” she said. “And it’s not only the amount of the mail, but the ballot is physically really large. I don’t know if you saw the paper ones that people vote on in the mail are 18 inches long and they’re just hard to count.
"They have to be folded multiple times, and sometimes the folds catch in the machine. It just took a long time. There wasn’t anything really wrong, we just had some issues.”
The Cobb County Board of Elections will meet Monday to certify the election results.