Black voters in Floyd County signaled an unprecedented enthusiasm for the upcoming election, casting ballots in the May primary at about three times the rate of white voters.
And they showed up for the July 24 runoff at a similar rate, according to reports from the Georgia secretary of state’s office.
A host of state positions, from governor to General Assembly seats, are on the ballot along with a contested County Commission race.
While the local turnout rate for the primary clocked in at just 4.67 percent overall, 13.73 percent of eligible black women and 11.06 percent of black men voted. Asian women also topped the average, at 4.67 percent.
The percentage of Hispanic voters also was higher than that of white women’s 3.96 percent and white men’s 3.47 percent.
White voters, however, make up 75 percent of the county’s active roll of 50,708 as of the Aug. 1 report. For the runoff, that meant a turnout rate of just 0.70 percent of white voters equaled 292 votes compared to the 155 votes that came from a 2.25 percent turnout among black voters.
Registration is open through Oct. 9 for the Nov. 6 general election. In-person advance voting runs from Oct. 15 through Nov. 2, with Oct. 27 set as a Saturday voting opportunity statewide.
Residents can check their status and register online through the Georgia My Voter website. Mail-in registration forms also are available at college registrar offices, at public libraries, drivers services, public assistance and other government offices including the Floyd County Board of Elections, 12 E. Fourth Ave.
The level of engagement in the primaries by demographic group is a marked change from the 2016 presidential election.
Turnout rates then were 66.6 percent for white women and 66.17 percent for white men, the only groups to exceed the county’s average of 62.07 percent.
A rate of 57.89 percent for Native American men translated into 11 votes. Other groups voted in lower rates: Hispanic women at 55.39 percent, black women at 53.99 percent and Asian women at 51.24 percent. The rates for black and Hispanic men were just over 42 percent.
Women make up 54 percent of the electorate in Floyd County, according to the Aug. 1 report.