May 13, 2014

Early voting ends Friday

— Three more days.

That’s how long early voting will last, with Friday being the last day to cast a ballot before the May 20 general primary.

In Whitfield County, early voting takes place in the elections office in the courthouse in Dalton from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. In Murray County, early voting takes place in the elections office in the courthouse annex in Chatsworth from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

You’ll still be able to cast your ballot on primary day on Tuesday, so if you aren’t able to take advantage of early voting all is not lost. But by going to the polls this week you can beat any long lines and avoid any waits.

You also make sure that you cast your ballot even if something unexpected happens that might keep you from voting on Tuesday.

This year’s ballot contains plenty of choices.

For governor, Republicans will choose from among incumbent Nathan Deal, former Dalton mayor David Pennington and state school Superintendent John Barge as their nominee. The winner will face Jason Carter, a state senator from Decatur who was the only Democrat who qualified, in November.

Eight candidates are seeking the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by the retiring Saxby Chambliss. They are U.S. representatives Paul Broun, Phil Gingrey and Jack Kingston; former Georgia secretary of state Karen Handel, businessmen David Perdue of Macon and Eugene Yu of Augusta; Marietta attorney Art Gardner; and Derrick Grayson of Stone Mountain.

Michelle Nunn, the daughter of former U.S. senator Sam Nunn, Atlanta physician Branko Radulovacki, Oglethorpe Mayor Gerald Beckum, former state senator Steen Miles and ex-U.S. Army Ranger Todd Robinson of Columbus are seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate.

Locally, there are contested races for two seats in the state House of Representatives, one seat on the Whitfield County Board of Commissioners, one post on the Whitfield Board of Education, one post on the Murray Board of Education, Murray County’s chief magistrate judge, a seat on the Conasauga Superior Court, which covers both Whitfield and Murray counties, and a seat in Congress.

So if you aren’t absolutely sure you’ll be able to vote on Tuesday, take the time to cast your ballot this week before early voting ends.

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