Arkansas Primary: What you should know when you head to the polls

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 5:52 AM CDT
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BOONE COUNTY, Ark. (KY3) - Following a record-setting day on Monday, election officials will see even more voters during today’s primary election in the Natural State.

In Boone County, election officials say they had the largest single-day turnout of early voters with 644. That brought the early voting total up to more than 3200. Boone County Clerk Crystal Graddy anticipates doubling that number by the time polls close.

“Primaries just don’t draw the turnout that a general election does, especially a general when you have a presidential election,’ explains Graddy. “We might have around six or seven thousand total votes. Sadly I don’t think that people realize this is really where you’re gonna be voting on the people that are going to make the most impact on your life here at home.”

If you decide to head to the polls to cast your vote, you’ll need to bring some form of ID. That can be your driver’s license, passport, current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government documents. Just make sure it lists your name and current address. If you forget your ID at home, you can still cast a provisional ballot, after signing a document that states you are a registered voter in that county. You also have the right to be informed, in writing, if your provisional ballot was not counted.

Once you get to the polls, Graddy explains you’ll be asked what primary you want to vote in: Republican, Democrat, or Non-Partisan. Graddy explains poll workers are not asking about your party affiliation.

“It doesn’t mean that you are that party, it just means that you are going to vote in that party’s primary,” says Graddy.

Arkansas holds open primary elections, meaning that a voter does not have to be registered with a political party in advance in order to participate in its primary. Boone County is also a Vote Center county, meaning voters can go to any of the 13 voting centers in the county that they want to.

Here’s a list of those locations: Boone County Election Center, Alpena Community Center, Bellefonte City Hall, Bergman City Hall, Burlington Baptist Church, Capps Trinity Baptist Church, Cottonwood Volunteer Fire Department, Diamond City - City Hall, Hilltop Volunteer Fire Department, Lead Hill First Baptist Church, Omaha Community Center, Valley Springs City Hall, Woodland Heights Baptist Church.

Polls open at 7:30 a.m. and close at 7:30 p.m. As long as you are in line at a voting center by 7:30 p.m., you will be allowed to vote.

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