Early in-person voting off to a ‘slow start’

COLUMBUS, Ind. — Early in-person voting for the May 7 primary got off to a “somewhat slow” start this week, count election officials said.

As of 11:30 a.m. Friday, a total of 191 people had voted early in-person at Donner Center since voting started on Tuesday, said Bartholomew County Clerk Shari Lentz. By comparison, 321 people voted early in-person on just the first day of early voting during the 2020 primary.

Additionally, 327 people have already requested an absentee-by-mail ballot this year, and 93 of those ballots have already been returned.

“We’re off to somewhat of a slow start,” Lentz said. “…I was hopeful that we’d have a little bit better turnout our first week, but I know it’s early. We’ll just hope that our numbers go up as we move into the coming weeks.”

Early in-person voting for the primary will continue weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Donner Center, 739 22nd St., through May 3, according to the Bartholomew County Clerk’s Office.

Early in-person voting also will be held the two Saturdays before Election Day April 27 and May 4 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Donner Center and the Bartholomew County Government Office Building, and 8 a.m. to noon at Donner Center on May 6, the day before the election.

Because it is a primary, voters must choose either the Republican ballot or the Democratic ballot. It is not possible to vote for candidates in both parties. The winners in the primary will secure their party’s nomination to run for office in the general election this fall.

So far, 154 Bartholomew County voters have cast votes on the Republican ballot, while 37 have voted in the Democratic primary, Lentz said.