Despite persistent drizzling rain throughout Tuesday morning, Brookfield primary voters trickled in to (BHS) and (HHES) to nominate candidates for the U.S. Senate, the 5th Congressional District and the Connecticut 107th District.
As of 1 p.m. 797 votes had been cast at both polling places, with 565 Republican ballots being used and 218 Democratic. Out of Brookfield’s 10,093 registered voters, 3,581 are with the Republican Party and 2,124 are Democrats, putting voter turnout at 15.8 percent and 10.3 percent, respectively. (The town also has 4,264 residents registered as Unaffiliated and 124 associated with minor parties.)
At District I, HHES, 271 ballots had been recorded by the machine as of 1 p.m., with 191 ballots picked up by Republican party members and 66 by Democrats. (Fourteen ballots were issued but not used.)
At BHS, District II, 562 ballots had been accepted, 152 from registered Democrats and 374 from registered Republicans.
Voting has been slow but steady at both polling locations, according to the poll moderators, but the complexity of running dual primaries has caused some issues.
Those wishing to vote in either of Tuesday’s primaries would have had to register with one of the two major parties by Monday, August 13, BHS moderator Paula Hopewell explained, and only registered party members are allowed to vote in primaries in Connecticut.
Hopewell also cautioned voters to choose only one candidate per race on the ballot. By the afternoon, there had already been a number of “over votes,” wherein voters had marked more than one choice on the ballot, which the machine will not accept as valid.
At HHES, construction of a new roof is adding to the difficulties, both by clogging up the roadways through the parking lot and restricting access to the building for people under the age of 18. Persons under 18 cannot enter the building while construction is going on per state law, moderator Adrienne Spera said, which, unfortunately, includes 17-year-old citizens that will be eligible to vote in November and therefore have a voice in the primary.
In order to accommodate those voters and parents with young children that cannot be left, the HHES location is offering curbside voting by request.
The polls will be open until 8 p.m. tonight. Check back with Brookfield Patch for up-to-the-minute updates as the results come in.