Low Voter Turnout, New Photo IDs Topic At Polls
For many, it was not a surprise that there was a low voter turnout on this primary election day, even though there are two Democrats fighting for the commonwealth’s attorney general’s position and three Republicans grabbing for the presidential candidate’s spot.
And then there is the photo ID that was practiced in this election.
At the Grimes Center, Jim Knapp, the chairman of the Haverford Township Republican Party, said that most of the polling places he has visited throughout the day have had a low turnout.
State Rep. Greg Vitali (D-166), who visited the Haverford High School, concurred, saying most of the polling places he has been to had seen a low number of voters.
Both Knapp and Vitali, along with others at various voting places, said that the low numbers are all too common during a primary election.
According to Judge of Elections Elizabeth Ann Gittelman at the high school, out of 800 registered voters for that location, only about 156 people showed up by 6 p.m.
But besides the low turnout, another issue that Vitali, who is running uncontested, has is the practice of poll workers asking voters for photo ID to confirm who they are.
“No one has tried to misrepresent themselves,” Vitali said. “It’s a solution in search of a problem.”
“Photo ID’s is a hindrance and an obstacle,” she said.
However, Richard Manco, the judge of elections at the Haverford Township Police Department, said that only about 10 people were upset about the practice of showing their photo ID’s.
Manco said that most people did not have an issue with the practice of showing their photo Ids.
The law goes into effect for the November presidential election.
As of 7 p.m., Manco said that there were 234 people who voted, out of the 1,400 registered for that area.
“With a primary election, we’ll be lucky to get one out of five (voters),” he said.
At the Manoa Fire Co., Steve D'Emilio, 1st Ward commissioner, said that he was disappointed and surprised with the low voter turnout.
“I thought there would be more of a turnout because of the Republican presidential candidates,” he said.
The Manoa Fire Co. saw only 198 voters out of 1,200 who came out by around 8 p.m., when the polls closed.