NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Election Connection

November 6, 2012

Down to the wire

Voters, candidates ready for historic election

(Continued)

All voting takes place at the Hilton Senior Center on Route 1, next to the Salisbury fire station.

“We have more absentee ballots than we’ve ever had before; we’re at 350 already,” McDonald said yesterday. “And we’re getting calls every two minutes checking on their status.”

As of yesterday, Salisbury had 5,977 on its voter registration list. The vast majority, 3,747, are unenrolled, with 1,438 Democrats, 762 Republicans, four Green Party and 26 Libertarians.

At the last presidential election in 2008, Salisbury had a 71 percent voter turnout, but in the 2004 presidential election it was even higher, at 73 percent.

The hectic pace of the hard-fought campaigns for national and state races has added to the tension in just about every clerk’s office across the state, McDonald added.

“Every city and town clerk wants this to be over,” McDonald said. “We’re all going to be very happy when it’s Wednesday.”

Seabrook

Town Clerk Bonnie Fowler has seen many a busy run-up to a presidential election, but never like this one.

“We’ve received 365 absentee ballots cast already and I expect more,” Fowler said yesterday. “That’s a good response.”

Seabrook voters turned out in high numbers in the neck-and-neck battle for the White House between Al Gore and George W. Bush in 2000, Fowler said.

“We always have a great turnout in presidential elections, but I think this is going to be the biggest one ever,” Fowler said. “I think we’re going to have lines. But in Seabrook, as a town as a whole, people are always respectful of each other.

As of yesterday, 5,128 were on the voter checklist in Seabrook — 1,443 Democrats, 1,853 Republicans and 1,832 undeclared voters. But with election day voter registration allowed throughout the Granite State, numbers could change by a large margin at the polls today.

The polls are open in Seabrook from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Community/Recreation Center on Route 1, next to Kohl’s.

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