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Cameron County sees low early voting turnout

1 month 1 week 6 days ago Monday, October 25 2021 Oct 25, 2021 October 25, 2021 5:28 PM October 25, 2021 in Election Coverage

As of Monday, just over 1,600 voters have cast an early ballot in Cameron County.

Election officials say Cameron County is on track to have fewer early votes than the last two statewide constitutional amendment elections. However, officials are still hopeful the number of people voting by mail will make up for less in-person traffic at the polls. 

"We're a little off pace for the 2019 election, but there's certainly an opportunity for us to see increases," Cameron County Elections Administrator Remi Garza said. "A lot of individuals who used to vote early and in-person may now be voting by mail."

Officials say more than 1,400 mail-in ballots have already returned this election cycle, 300 more than similar elections in the past. 

Garza says those mail-in ballots give people more time to look over issues, typically leading to more votes being cast. 

Still, lack of understanding and low voter education impact the number of people heading to the polls says UTRGV Political Science Professor Dr. Mark Kaswan. 

"It is so hard for voters to get even basic information about what's on the ballot," Kaswan said, adding that education is key for turnout. 

Though Kaswan says the information is out there for voters, in Texas, the state doesn't send out a detailed breakdown of the proposed constitutional amendments in the mail, as other states do. 

"The state produces these," Kaswan said. "If they would distribute them to people, it would help immensely."

 

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