Indiana won’t have official numbers on voter turnout until May 20 after provisional ballots are counted, but initial estimates indicate turnout for the May 2 primary varied significantly from county to county.
Indiana Secretary of State spokeswoman Valerie Kroeger says the candidates and issues are the two things that drive elections.
“In counties where there was a sheriffs race or a prosecutors race — where people were really interested in — we saw a higher turnout in those counties where there were local races,” she says. ”In counties where there weren’t highly contested races, there wasn’t much of a drive for voters to get out there.”
Bartholomew County Clerk Tami Hines says she heard neighboring counties had low turn-out rates but nearly 20 percent of voters in Bartholomew County came to the polls.
“We had a few highly contested races on the Republican ballot,” Hines says. ”Our local sheriff had several candidates. We had a judge’s seat that had three candidates. We had a couple of county council races that had multiple candidates.”
Hines says the 20 percent turnout in Bartholomew County is in line with the primary election four years ago.