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Island County auditor expects average voter turnout in primary

Fueled by excitement over three- and four-way races for state and county positions, as well as the national political atmosphere, Island County has been abuzz with anticipation of the first top-two primary Aug. 19.

Island County Auditor Sheilah Crider does not anticipate higher-than-usual voter turnout, however.

Crider said she expects about 60 to 62 percent of ballots to be returned.

So far, the auditor's office has received about 5,500 of the 44,550 that were mailed out earlier this month.

"They are trickling in a little slower than expected," Crider said.

The auditor's office expects the majority of ballots to arrive between Monday and Thursday of next week.

Ballots must be postmarked Aug. 19 or earlier to be counted.

Island County's turnout is typically higher than other areas of the state and Washington overall.

Statewide, Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed is predicting a 46 percent turnout for the state’s first-ever top-two primary.

If the prediction holds true, Reed said it would be the best turnout for a primary in years.

During the last presidential election year, in 2004, the primary turnout in Washington was 45.14 percent. During the primary in 2000, statewide turnout was 40.8 percent.

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