Monday is the last day of early voting for the 2012 general election.
Douglas, Sarpy, and Pottawattamie Counties have all seen record numbers of early voters this election cycle. Douglas County Election Commissioner Dave Phipps predicts voter turnout will be 68 percent, down from 2008’s 73 percent. Phipps says there are a couple of factors behind the stronger turnout four years ago. “As much as anything it was an open seat, it was a chance to elect the first African-American president, those sort of things, it was kind of historic making, so I think the excitement level of all of that really pushed people to come out and vote in that election.”
Sarpy County Election Commissioner Wayne Bena predicts 70 percent voter turnout. Bena says 24,000 of the county’s 99,122 registered voters have already cast ballots. “In every election we’ve seen the percentage go higher and higher because as people discover it, it’s something they want to continue to do. The benefits of being able to vote at your kitchen table and come back to the ballot if you’re not comfortable with a race seems to be a better option for people than having to make the decision right there in the polling booth.”
After redistricting, Bellevue and Offutt Air Force base became part of the First Congressional District. The rest of Sarpy County is now in the Second District.
Polls are open Tuesday in Nebraska from 8AM to 8PM and in Iowa from 7AM to 9PM.