It’s election day on Tuesday in Sarasota and Manatee counties, but thousands of your friends and neighbors have already cast ballots for candidates running for school board, county commission, state legislature, statewide offices and Congress.
Polls will open at 7 a.m. and will remain open until the last voter in line at 7 p.m. has a chance to vote.
In most cases, votes tallied today will lead to winners contending for office in the Nov. 6 general election. But there will be winners in non-partisan school board races in both counties.
Florida’s closed primary system allows only registered party members to vote in party primaries, so ballots will differ not only by location but also by party affiliation.
But school board races are open for all voters, even those with no party affiliation, as is a contested race for a judgeship in the 12th Circuit Court.
Early voting at in-person locations in Sarasota closed on Saturday afternoon with 14,003 votes cast. As of Saturday, 42,814 mail ballots had been accepted. That leads to an 18.1% voter turnout figure before the first precinct opens its doors on Tuesday.
In Manatee County, 42,448 mail or in-person votes have been cast, a 17.66% turnout thus far.
For election day information, visit manatee.electionsfl.org or sarasotavotes.com