Low voter turnout in Primary Elections continued this year.
A total of 4,953 ballots were cast in Tuesday's election, which is the second-lowest total for the county in a mid-term Primary since 1990. The lowest turnout in that time period came in 2002 when 4,908 ballots were cast. This year's turnout was 39 ballots fewer than were submitted in 2006 (4,992)
Of those who voted, 4,416 did so in person -- which is the lowest amount since 1990 -- while absentee voting reached its peak in the last 20 years with 537.
Voter registration was also down by 1,050 compared to the 2006 Primary (19,713), as 18,663 individuals were eligible to vote this year. Overall, 26.54 percent of registered voters cast a ballot, which is also the second-lowest total since 1990.
Out of the county's 23 precincts, only three (Jackson 3, Jackson 1 and Washington) had more than one-third of its respective voters make their voices heard. Jackson 3 had the highest percentage turnout with 40.38 percent (126 of 312).
Four other precincts had a voter turnout of less than 20 percent during Tuesday's election. These precincts are (listed by descending percentages:
* Posey 2 -- 19.94 percent (133 of 667),
* Brazil 3 -- 19.7 percent (213 of 1,081),
* Brazil 1 -- 18.57 percent (223 of 1,201), and
* Brazil 6 -- 16.18 percent (95 of 587).
The highest percentage of absentee votes came from the Brazil 5 precinct as 40 of the 198 ballots cast came in that manner.
With the majority of heated races coming on the Republican side, some voters switched parties in hopes of making more of an impact.
However, this change will be in effect for at least a year.
"Every election has a number of people who change parties for the Primary since it is straight-ticket voting," Clay County Deputy Clerk Beth Mallinak told The Brazil Times. "Since you don't have to register with a specific party in Indiana, the affiliation is based on the ballot you choose in the Primary."
Mallinak added party status cannot change until a ballot is cast in a future Primary Election. For county residents, this will take place in 2012, while residents eligible to vote in the 2011 municipal election may do so then.
"It really doesn't make much of a difference in the General Election because all the candidates are on the same ballot," she said.
Although the State of Indiana does not have an automatic recount system, or a statutory minimum or maximum vote differential to petition for a recount, there is a time limit to do so.
Candidates who may feel the election results may be incorrect have until noon, Tuesday, May 18, to file a verified election recount or contest position.
According to the Indiana Secretary of State's Office, the petition is similar to a lawsuit, which would have to be filed with either the Superior or Circuit Court. The cost for the recount would be paid with a bond that can vary between $100 and thousands, depending on the vote percentage differential and number of precincts needed to be recounted.
Updated school board results
The following figures reflect the final tally of votes cast in the race for the three At-Large positions on the Clay Community School Board of Trustees, including those cast in Jackson Township in Parke County, which were provided to the Clay County Election Office Wednesday. Results from Parke County did not affect the winners in this race.
* Robert A. (Rob) Miller -- 66 (Parke County), 3,172 overall,
* Amy Burke Adams -- 76 (Parke County), 2,709 overall,
* Ronald Lee Scherb -- 49 (Parke County), 2,276 overall,
* Barbara E. Nicoson -- 46 (Parke County), 2,040 overall,
* Philip D. Greenwell -- 29 (Parke County), 1,086 overall,
* Leo L. Southworth -- 41 (Parke County), 1,047 overall.