November 6, 2012

Elections: Today’s the day

Polls open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

From Staff Reports

— Today’s election ballots in Whitfield and Murray counties include several contested races, including for sheriff in both counties, as well as a controversial charter schools amendment and of course the presidential race. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Voters in both two counties, along with the rest of Georgia’s 14th Congressional District, will also decide between Republican incumbent Tom Graves of Ranger and Democrat Danny Grant, an electrician who lives in Ringgold.

In Whitfield County, Sheriff Scott Chitwood, the Democratic candidate, is challenged by former sheriff Jim Stafford, a Republican. In Murray County, Democratic incumbent Howard Ensley faces Republican Gary Langford, a retired law enforcement officer who spent most of his career with the Georgia State Patrol.

Whitfield County voters will also choose between incumbent Republican Thomas Barton and Democrat Nicky Starling in the race for Board of Education District 1.

In Murray County, Tax Commissioner Charlotte Keener, a Democrat, faces Republican challenger Kay Leonard McCurdy, and Clerk of Superior Court Connie Gallman Reed, a Democrat, is being challenged by Republican Donna Flood.

Some Murray County voters will choose between incumbent Republican John Meadows and Democrat Howard Johnson for state House of Representatives District 5. That district includes western Gordon County and part of southwest Murray County.

In the presidential race, Gary Johnson, former New Mexico governor and the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate, will also be on the ballot in Georgia, along President Obama, the Democratic candidate, and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate.

Georgians may also vote on the proposed constitutional amendment that would allow the state to create a commission that could approve charter schools. Local school boards can already approve charter schools.

Voters need to bring one of the six accepted forms of photo identification. They are: a valid state or federal government-issued photo ID; a Georgia driver’s license, even if it’s expired; a valid employee photo ID from any local, state or federal government; a valid U.S. passport; a valid U.S. military photo ID; or a valid tribal photo ID.