Less than 25% turnout for county primary

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

More than three-quarters of the registered voters of Putnam County exercised their right Tuesday -- their right to do nothing on primary election day in Indiana.

Only 24.56 percent of local registered voters actually went to the polls Tuesday on a picture-perfect spring day.

Of the 23,175 registered voters in Putnam County, only 5,692 cast ballots in the 2012 primary.

Six Putnam precincts posted a turnout of less than 20 percent with First South in Greencastle recording the worst among all 31 precincts at 12.66 percent.

Also under 20 percent turnout on the day were Fourth East (14.27), Third West (14.36), Fourth West (15.26), Cloverdale 2 (18.4) and First North (19.53).

The day's best turnout came in Clinton Township, the last precinct posted for the night at the courthouse. Clinton saw 34.62 percent of its registered voters venture out to the polls.

Also topping 30 percent turnout Tuesday were Foxridge (32.9 percent) Monroe West (32.32) and Greencastle North (30.48).

"I was expecting a turnout in the low 20s," Putnam County Republican Chairman Darwyn Nelson said, indicating he was actually pleased that the figure surpassed that after all the votes were tallied Tuesday night.

"The interesting thing in running the county today," he said, "was how some polls kind of went along in big spurts, while some didn't have any spurts at all, just two or three at a time, two or three at a time."

Running his first primary as GOP chairman, Nelson said he was thrilled with the quality of candidates his party was able to put before the public.

"First of all," he said, "I want to compliment everyone who ran. They took a risk and stepped up to the plate to put their name on the ballot. That's important.

"I'm very pleased with our Putnam County candidates, all of them, and how they ran their campaigns without any negative ads -- especially opposed to what you were seeing other places."

Despite tallying votes for 31 precincts now, the Putnam County Clerk's Office had processed all the day's votes and recorded the precinct numbers by 8:45 p.m. Tuesday.

"I also want to compliment (County Clerk) Marty (Watts) and her staff," Nelson said. "There were a lot of changes this year and everything was done very well. And I'm not jut talking about today, I mean the last six months. She and her staff are really very professional."

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