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Advanced voting for presidential primary opens

CUMMING — Starting this week, Forsyth County voters can weigh in on the race to succeed Barack Obama as advance voting opens for the March 1 Presidential Preference Primary.

Voting begins Monday and will continue on weekdays — and one Saturday — for the next three weeks at the Forsyth County Administration Building and Cumming City Hall, both in downtown Cumming, as well as the Hampton Park Library in north Forsyth and Midway and Sharon Springs parks in west and south Forsyth.

Barbara Luth, the county’s supervisor of voter registrations and elections, said voters will need to choose a political party.

“They can vote either a Democrat or a Republican ballot when they go to the polls,” she said. “We do not have any nonpartisan or special elections going on during this election.”

The General Primary, which will feature many local and state offices, is scheduled for May 24.

Voters should note that the presidential primary ballots will feature the names of some candidates who have withdrawn.

“They’re all on the ballot because we haven’t received any formal written requests from the secretary of state that said that they have suspended their campaigns,” Luth said.

“The best thing for people to do is to get out there and look at the candidates that they’re looking at and make sure that they haven’t suspended their campaign.”

The deadline to register to vote in the presidential primary was Feb. 1. The last day to sign up for general primary is April 26. According to Luth, the number of registrations has been rising.

“We have almost 130,000 [registered voters],” Luth said. “We actually received a lot of online registrations, because of the [presidential] cutoff [date]. We had more than 500 that came in that day alone. It’s very popular, and we like it.”

For the first two weeks of voting — Feb. 8-12 and Feb. 15-19 — polls will be open from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the administration building in downtown Cumming and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the other precincts.

On Feb. 20, a Saturday, and the week of Feb. 22-26, voting will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., except at the administration building, where hours will remain the same as the previous weeks.

On Election Day, all the precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In the event of winter weather, polls will close if county government offices do or if directed to do so by the state.

More information can be found at