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More than 1,000 voters cast early ballots in Hall County
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More than 1,000 people cast their ballots during this week’s early voting at the Hall County Elections Office ahead of the July 15 primary, Interim Director of Elections Charlotte Sosebee-Hunter said.

Though she said it was hard to categorize early voters by factors such as age or gender, party affiliation was a clear divider in the election, which is partisan.

"Those that vote early vote early. You see them at every election," Sosebee-Hunter said.

She said 1,000 people chose to vote on the Republican ballot, while 241 voted in the Democratic races.

"There are more Republicans, of course, that are voting," Sosebee-Hunter said, which she attributed to the political landscape of the state.

Unlike absentee voting, you do not need to have a reason to vote early in the week prior to an election.

Sosebee-Hunter said Monday was "a steady day" with 272 voters, and she saw a spike Tuesday with 366 voters.

Many of the candidates in the elections voted Tuesday while they were at the office filing forms that were due that day, Sosebee-Hunter said. She said she also noticed that a lot of poll workers voted Friday.

There were 294 voters Wednesday and 303 voters Thursday.

Voter turnout is expected to stay consistent with February’s election, in which 44.3 percent of voters came to the polls, Sosebee-Hunter said. But the November presidential election will draw far more voters.

"I can just about predict there’s going to be a major turnout in November," said Sosebee-Hunter, who is expecting about 75 percent of voters to show up at the polls. "It’s always been that way. People feel like they need to vote for the president rather than the locals."

Those who are planning to go to the polls Tuesday may find that certain times of day are much busier than others because Election Day falls during the work week.

Sosebee-Hunter said most people try to vote early in the morning, starting at 7 a.m., around lunchtime and after 5 p.m.

"Anytime in-between those would be the best times to go to the polls if you are at liberty to not be at work," Sosebee-Hunter said.

She also reminded voters to bring one of the six forms of identification required to vote.

On Friday, the Georgia Democratic Party’s request to temporarily block the use of photo identification in the Tuesday’s general primary was denied by Fulton County Superior Court Judge Tom Campbell.

"In the past year, the Georgia Supreme Court, the U.S. District Court in Rome and the U.S. Supreme Court have all rejected attacks on the constitutionality of the photo ID requirement," Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handle said in a statement Friday. "Opponents of photo ID have failed to produce even one voter who has been harmed by the requirement, despite years of scouring the state in search of such an individual."

Acceptable forms of ID include: a valid Georgia driver’s license, even if it is expired; any standard state or federal ID card, including the free voter ID; or a valid U.S. passport.

Employee IDs will work for government employees, and a valid military ID or tribal ID is fine.

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