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Porter Library precinct chief predicts 70 percent turnout

It’s not everyday you get a sticker from a clown in addition to your “I Voted” sticker. But for some voters in Garrisonville’s Porter Library polling place, that was the case this evening.

Sandy Cohen, also known as LOLA the clown in Stafford, voted in full clown attire before going to a kids night at Applebee’s.

Cohen, a clown and full-time mom to an autistic daughter, voted for Romney.

“The people in power get to decide if my handicapped child gets the money and services she needs,” said Cohen. “I’m a special interest group all myself.”

Cohen, whose husband is retired military and a volunteer fire chief in the county, said she was worried more about the system than the individual in power. “Romney’s people seem like they’ve got things together, what about him is another story,” she said. Her family is split politically, with her oldest daughter voting Democratic.

Turnout at Porter was about 52 percent at 5:30, with an hour and a half left for voters to go to the polls. Lines were long in the morning, but after 9:30, there was just a steady flow. Chief election official Gary Crocker estimated a 70 percent turnout at the end of the night. He said new technology was working well– including scanners to quickly read voter cards and drivers licenses.

Registrar Greg Riddlemoser said he doesn’t track the turnout throughout the day. He won’t know the final numbers until the end of the night.

Alyse Brown, 18, worries about making mistakes during her first time filling out a ballot, but she was confident everything went smoothly. She and mom Kim Baums voted for Obama, citing more positives over the past few years than negatives. “I’m sure it could have been way worse,” said Baums. She noted that healthcare was important since it meant her daughter could stay on her policy for several more years.

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