Primary election Thursday
2018 is shaping up to be an important election year, and Marshall County voters will get an extra opportunity to go to the polls on Thursday.
Tomorrow marks the primary election day for the vacant 14th District State Senate seat.
Marshall County Election Administrator Andrew Robertson said that 524 votes had been cast during the early voting period.
The “extremely slow” voting was “not totally unexpected,” he said.
“It’s a bad time of the year to hold an election,” said Robertson, citing the timing after the holidays, issues with weather, and a single race on the ballot as contributors to a low turnout.
Two Republicans, Joe Carr and Shane Reeves, are facing each other in the single race on the ballot.
Both men live in Rutherford County. The district covers Marshall, Moore, Bedford, Lincoln, and part of Rutherford Counties.
Carr served six years in the legislature as a Representative and challenged incumbent Lamar Alexander in the primary for the U.S. Senate seat.
Reeves is a pharmacist and businessman in his first race for office. Former State Senator Jim Tracy endorsed Reeves as his successor.
The race has become contentious over the past few weeks, with the pair sniping at one another about their conservative credentials.
All nine of the county’s regular polling places will be open on Thursday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Robertson emphasized that voters should go to their regular precinct to vote, not to the Election Commission office at the Hardison School.
Voters with questions can call the office at 931-359-4894.
The legislative session began earlier in January, meaning the eventual election winner will have to hit the ground running in the middle of the session.
The special election was set by Governor Bill Haslam to replace Tracy, who served in the seat for 13 years before accepting the nomination to serve as the Tennessee Director for Rural Development in the United States Department of Agriculture.
The winner of the Republican primary will face Democratic nominee Gayle Jordan in the March 13 general election.
Jordan also opposed Tracy in the 2016 election.