By Monday afternoon, more than 2,400 Mills County residents had already cast their ballot for next Tuesday’s general election.
Election officials expect that number to continue to rise as Election Day nears, greatly surpassing the 2,447 Mills County ballots that were cast early in 2008, the last presidential election year.
“We’re seeing more people at the counter. This has been constant since the 27th (of September),” Mills County Auditor and Election Commissioner Carol Robertson said Monday. “Four years ago, it was busy the last few days, but it’s been steady from the start this year.”
Robertson attributes the increase in early voting numbers to the publicity the presidential election is getting from the news media and a deliberate push by both the Republican and Democratic parties to get votes in the bank prior to Election Day.
“The parties are really pushing people to get out and vote,” Robertson said.
Historically, presidential elections have generated higher-than-normal voter turnout. In 2008, over 7,100 of Mills County’s 10,500 registered voters took part in the presidential election. Similar numbers are expected to play out in 2012, Robertson said.
In last June’s primary election, only 1,626 voters (about 15 percent of registered) went to the polls in Mills County.
Fueling the enthusiasm in this year’s election is a close and hotly-contested presidential race between Democratic incumbent Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney.
Iowa is among a handful of toss-up states that are expected to determine the outcome of the 2012 presidential election.
Mills County residents wanting to vote early can do so this week at the Mills County Auditor’s Office in Glenwood. The office closes at 4:30 p.m. but will be open Saturday for voting from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Polls on Election Day will be open across the state from 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Questions about the election and voting procedures should be directed to the auditor’s office at 527-3146. A sample ballot may be viewed on the county’s website.
All voters in Mills County who go to the polls Tuesday will have the option of having their driver’s license scanned as a means of checking in.
Emerson, Hastings, Indian Creek Township – Indian Creek Museum 59256 380th St, Hastings.
Deer Creek, White Cloud Townships – Indian Creek Museum 59256 380th St, Hastings.
Henderson, Anderson Township – City Hall / Community Center located at 100 S. West St. in Henderson.
Malvern, Tabor, Rawles, Center and Silver Creek Townships – Malvern Public Library, 502 Main St, Malvern.
Silver City, Ingraham Township – Silver City American Legion located at 430 Main St., Silver City.
Oak, Saint Mary Townships – Mineola Saint John Lutheran Church (parish hall) located at 603 Main St., Mineola.
Glenwood Township – Engineer Facility (meeting room south entrance), located at 403 Railroad Ave., Glenwood.
Glenwood Ward No. 1 – Mills County Courthouse (board room) located at 418 Sharp St., Glenwood.
Glenwood Ward No. 2 – American Legion Building (main level First Street entrance west half), located at the corner of First Street and Vine Street, Glenwood.
Glenwood Ward No. 3 – American Legion Building (main level First Street entrance east half) located at the corner of First Street and Vine Street, Glenwood.
Pacific Junction, Plattville and Lyons Townships – Pacific Junction Community Center, located at 530 Lincoln, Pacific Junction.