Slow start at the polls on Primary Day

September 13, 2018 06:15 PM

Polls in Albany County opened to voters at noon on Thursday. Betsey Kuzia was the first to cast a ballot at the Ezra Prentice Homes polling site.

"I think it's an important thing for us to do. it's probably the main thing that we can do if we have concerns about the politics of today," said Kuzia.

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Workers began setting up the room at 11:30 and hurried to get everything ready for a lunchtime rush of voters. At the Presbyterian Church in Center Square there was a similar scene.

"It was easy to get over here on my lunch break. I work downtown," said on voter. "I just think it's an important thing to actually vote and be part of the process."

At the Albany Library's Pine Hill Branch poll workers say there was a line when they first opened. By 1:30 things had slowed down to a trickle of voters every now and then.

As of November 2017 Albany COunty had a little over 179,000 active registered voters. About 90,000 of them ar Democrats and eligible to vote in today's gubernatorial primary. In the race for attorney general, Democrats, members of the Reform Party and unaffiliated voters can participate.

"It's the responsibility of every American to vote. I vote just for, I vote at the drop of the hat because I want my voice heard," said Blane Zubris.

Historically voters don't hit the polls in full force. In the 2016 presidential election year New York ranked 8th worst in voter turnout in the country.

"It's worrisome quite honestly but as I said my neighbor just pulled in. I ran into a fellow I used to work with and we're barely here five minutes so I'm hopeful that people like myself are going to be concerned and will turn out," said Kuzia.

Election officials say they expect voters to turn out in larger numbers as the evening goes on. Polls are open until 9 p.m.


Jacquie Slater

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