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Oneida County sees more than 280% increase in voter turnout for February primary
ONEIDA COUNTY - Many Northern Wisconsin communities experienced high voter turnout in primary elections this past Tuesday. 
Oneida County clerk Tracy Hartman said the municipalities under her watch were a part of that trend.

"We had one town that ran out - about 50 ballots short for voters" said Hartman referring to the Town of Three Lakes. "Those voters that finished the day out voted on a paper ballot and then they're hand counted at the end."

The last time Wisconsin held a February primary in 2018, only 3,363 people voted in Oneida County.

This year, 9,469 people cast ballots in state and local primary races marking a more than 280% increase. 

Hartman said the increase in votes is all about who's on the ballot. 

"We were expecting an increase with the Congressional seat primary on there, we knew the voter turnout would be better. But this, I think, was higher than what any of the clerks were expecting," said Hartman. 

Notably, the February primary in 2018 did not feature a Congressional race. The only two elections on the ballot were for Wisconsin Supreme Court and Woodruff Town Board Supervisor.

A primary for Wisconsin's 7th Congressional District in August 2018 only brought out 8,518 voters in Oneida County. 
Hartman said, no matter the turn out, it's encouraging to see people express their right to vote. 

"It's pretty exciting to know that people find it this important and that they're getting out and getting their voice heard, so we really like to see the numbers that high," said Hartman.

Marathon County also saw high voter turnout Tuesday with 23,908 ballots cast. That's a more than 252% increase from 2018.

Story By: Stephen Goin

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