Sample ballot online; absentees lag behind 2011, 2015

DTL Staff
Staff Writer

More than 100 people have voted absentee in the Aug. 6 primaries with three weeks remaining to cast ballots early. 

Meanwhile, to help voters better know what offices are up for election and who the candidates are, Clay County has posted sample ballots for the Democratic and Republican primaries on the county’s Web site for voter convenience.

To access the sample ballots, go to the county’s Web site — — and on the menu down the lefthand side, click on Government Offices. Under that tab, click on Circuit Clerk. Scroll down and under the introduction, click on the ‘election information’ tab. 

There you will see a listing for the Republican and Democratic sample ballots for the Aug. 6 elections. Click on which one you want to view. 

Through Friday afternoon, 103 people had voted absentee. The vast majority of those have been in the Democratic primary. 

The numbers so far are running well behind totals for the 2011 and 1015 primaries, which is the last time the county had the same kind of combined local and state elections. 

In 2011, 860 people voted absentee in the primaries. In 2015, 853 absentee ballots were cast. 

The highest number came in the contentious 2016 presidential election when 1,127 people voted absentee in the election eventually won by President Donald Trump. 

Absentee voting for the elderly, handicapped, people who will be out of town on election day and people who have to work and may not be able to get to the polls election day continues through Aug. 3. In-person absentee voting is available during regular business hours at the Clay County Circuit Court clerk’s office. 

Absentee by-mail ballots also can be requested there. 

The office will be open 8 a.m. until noon on Saturdays, July 27 and Aug. 3 for voters to cast absentee ballots. 

Election officials say as the election gets closer, they expect the absentee totals to approach the numbers from 2011 and 2015. 

Voters will pick local and state Democrat and Republican party nominees in the Aug. 6 primaries. Voters must decide whether to vote in the Democratic or Republican primary; they can’t vote in both. And if they vote in one, they can’t cross over and vote in the other party’s run-off, if there is one, on Aug. 27.