Voting at the County Administration Building

There was a short line of early voters at the Floyd County Administration Building on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020, compared with the previous day, but people coming out of the polling area reported they’d waited for an hour or two.

More than 75% of Floyd County voters in the Nov. 3 election opted to cast their ballots in person.

An audit is underway via a hand recount of the presidential race but certified results filed with the Georgia secretary of state provide a snapshot of what happened locally at the polls.

With 38,807 people casting ballots, no contested race drew universal participation. The biggest downballot drop-off occurred in the 14th Congressional District election, where more than 2,300 voters declined to select a favorite.

A few surprising pickups and a clear Libertarian shift in the presidential race are among the anomalies that show up in the numbers — along with what could be viewed as a mini-popularity contest among local elected officials.

♦ Early in-person voting drew the most people; almost twice as many who voted on Election Day. Together, they accounted for 77.40% of the votes cast in the contest between Republican President Donald Trump, Democrat Joe Biden and Libertarian Jo Jorgensen.

Just under 83% of Trump voters went in person, compared to 63.43% for Biden and 80.24% for Jorgensen.

♦ Of the 211 provisional ballots that were counted in the presidential election, 175 went to Trump and 36 to Biden.

♦ The Libertarian candidates on the ballot in the U.S. Senate and Public Service Commission races pulled more than 1,000 votes each. However, the presidential candidate, Jorgensen, received just 496.

The shift appears to have benefited Biden, who drew a vote share of 1% to 3% more than the Democrats in other statewide races. Trump and the other Republicans were closely matched with around 70% of the ballots cast.

♦ Of the Floyd County residents who voted, 219 turned in ballots that were either blank or had uncounted write-ins for the presidential race.

♦ The downballot drop-off started with 370 fewer votes cast in the U.S. Senate contest between Republican incumbent David Perdue, Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff and Libertarian Shane Hazel.

Most of the no-votes were on the early and absentee ballots. Ossoff netted 5 more votes than Biden on Election Day, although only Hazel pulled more total votes than his party’s presidential candidate.

♦ In the 14th District Congressional race, Democrat Kevin Van Ausdal — who formally withdrew before his contest with Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene — received 93 more votes than Biden from people who voted on Nov. 3.

Greene ended up with 26,111 votes, compared to Trump’s 27,120; and Van Ausdal got 10,352, compared to Biden’s 10,972.

The spread between Greene and Van Ausdal in Floyd County was slightly narrower than it was districtwide.

The representative-elect drew 71.61% of the vote locally while the “noncandidate” took 28.39%. In the 12-county Northwest Georgia district, Greene won with 74.78% of the total vote.

♦ In the federal races overall, 589 local voters didn’t make a choice in the contest for Perdue’s Senate seat; 1,283 didn’t vote in the multicandidate special election for the Senate seat held by Republican Kelly Loeffler; and 2,344 opted out of the House race.

♦ For the two Public Service Commission seats, 1,283 local voters skipped the race won by Republican incumbent Jason Shaw and 1,655 didn’t vote in the contest that’s now slated for a Jan. 5 runoff between Republican incumbent Bubba McDonald and Democrat Daniel Blackman.

♦ In the contested countywide races, 1,604 people didn’t vote in the Superior Court Clerk race won by incumbent Republican Barbara Penson; 1,306 skipped the County Commission race that sent Republican Allison Watters back for another term; 1,239 left blanks in the State Senate contest won by Republican incumbent Chuck Hufstetler; and 1,197 opted out of deciding the County Commission race won by Republican incumbent Wright Bagby Jr.

♦ About 2,000 local voters chose not to weigh in on the three statewide ballot questions.

♦ Elections for three state House seats and three county school board seats weren’t open to all 38,807 voters — but here’s a look at the support for the countywide candidates who will start new terms in January:

Sheriff-elect Dave Roberson (uncontested) — 33,641

Tax Commissioner Kevin Payne (uncontested) — 33,276

County Coroner Harold “Gene” Proctor (uncontested) — 33,003

District Attorney Leigh Patterson (uncontested) — 32,358

State Sen. Chuck Hufstetler — 28,141 (55,530 districtwide)

County Commissioner Allison Watters — 27,850

Clerk of Court Barbara Penson — 27,443

County Commissioner Wright Bagby Jr. — 26,971

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