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November ballot decided on Tuesday

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Voters will decide who will move on to the general election in several key races at Tuesday's primary election.

Hubbard County Auditor Pam Heeren is predicting a low voter turnout, which mirrors the state's projections.

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"We normally have a very low turnout and especially when they moved it into August," Heeren said. "When it was even right after Labor Day it was a tough time for our area. But the primary is normally a low turnout."

The August primary catches people on vacation, getting ready to go back to school, getting involved in fall sports or just plain out fishing, Heeren says.

A sample ballot is posted on the county's website.

"There's a wealth of reasons" people won't vote, she said.

Voting in the primary means party affiliation must be designated. "That's the problem with the primary," Heeren acknowledged. "Some people don't like that. They can't cross parties" or it invalidates the ballot.

"We hear that a lot."

Heeren said the information isn't furnished to the political parties, but the vote totals, especially in smaller counties, can easily be ascertained.

Judicial races don't generally attract voters unless some hot button issue is associated with a particular judge.

"It's a very scarce ballot but if you care who goes on to the next level..." Heeren said.

A Voter ID and anti-same sex marriage amendment won't get a litmus test in the primary. Those issues are on the fall ballot.

"That will be a full one," Heeren said of the Presidential year election in November.

Meanwhile, here are some choices voters can make in the primary:

n U.S. Senate: Republicans are David Carlson, Bob Carney Jr. and Kurt Bills. Democrats are Jack Edward Shepard, Amy Klobuchar, "Dick" Franson and Darryl Stanton

n U.S. House: Republican Chip Cravaack is running unopposed. Democrats vying to oppose him are Tarryl L. Clark, Jeff Anderson and Richard Nolan.

n In state offices, John Carlson is the Republican running in Dist. 5. Democrats Tom Saxhaug and Laverne H. Pederson are vying to oppose him.

n For Dist. 2B state representatives, Republicans David Collins and Steve Green are facing off to see who will run against Democrat Brita Sailer.

n Locally, only Hubbard County Commission Dist. 4 is of interest to voters.

Longtime incumbent Lyle Robinson is facing challenges from Ralph V. Sanquist, Teresa Rick and Dan Stacey.

Most candidates have said they will wait until after the primary to kick their campaigns into a higher gear.

But Collins and Green have been working hard, visiting every small town festival and event in the district. Both are expected to be at the Legends and Logging Festival this weekend in Park Rapids.

Ballot and polling information is on the county's website, www.co.hubbard.mn.us.

City voters can put their address into the website and it will direct you to your polling place.

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ssmit

Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers Hubbard County, courts and breaking news.

(218) 732-3364
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