By the numbers
With all 19 precincts reporting, the results in Forsyth County of the presidential preference primary are as follows:
* Donald Trump — 15,698 votes, or 37.2 percent
* Marco Rubio — 12,046 votes, or 28.5 percent
* Ted Cruz — 9,966 votes, or 23.6 percent
* John Kasich — 2,278 votes, or 5.4 percent
* Ben Carson — 1,769 votes, or 4.2 percent
* Jeb Bush — 219 votes, or .52 percent
* Rand Paul — 89 votes, or .21 percent
* Mike Huckabee — 46 votes, or .11 percent
* Chris Christie — 45 votes, or .11 percent
* Carly Fiorina — 33 votes, or .08 percent
* Rick Santorum — 21 votes, or .05 percent
* George Pataki — 8 votes, or .02 percent
* Lindsey Graham — 3 votes, or .01 percent
* Hillary Clinton — 3,701 votes, or 53.8 percent
* Bernie Sanders — 3,142 votes, or 45.7 percent
* Martin O’Malley — 24 votes, or.35 percent
* Michael Steinberg — 12 votes, or .17 percent
FORSYTH COUNTY — Forsyth County voters were in step with the state Tuesday during Georgia’s presidential preference primaries, as they backed Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.
With all 19 precincts reporting, county election figures showed Trump was the top vote getter in Forsyth, with 15,698 votes, or about 37 percent of the Republican total.
Clinton led the Democrats with 3,701 votes, or nearly 54 percent of the total.
Barbara Luth, the county’s supervisor of voter registrations and elections, described voter turnout as “very good for a primary.”
“It was busy,” she said. “We had 49,128 [voting] cards cast, that was absentee and the mail and everything. The only thing that it doesn’t count is any provisional or [overseas ballots] that we may have come by Friday. We actually had a 46.7 percent [turnout] almost.”
Jason Mock, chairman of the local Republican Party, appreciated such strong interest, but said the party wouldn’t be making any endorsements.
“It’s exciting to see that people came out and supported Donald Trump,” he said. “This election is winding its way down to the convention this summer.
“Until there is an official nominee, the party will not take a stance on one candidate or another. But it is exciting to see that Trump’s supporters came out.”
Finishing second in Forsyth was U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida with 12,046 votes, or about 28.5 percent, while U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas received 9,966 votes, or about 23.6 percent.
Mock said whoever eventually secures the presidential nomination would have the full support of the local party.
“We’re going to get behind that nominee,” he said. “If it’s Donald Trump, then make sure that he has every tool necessary to be successful in November against that Democratic nominee.
“We’re going to get behind the nominee 100 percent if it’s Donald or if it’s Rubio or Ted Cruz.”
Compared to Trump’s 3,652 vote-victory over Rubio in Forsyth, the Democrats’ primary was closer. U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont drew 3,142 votes, or about 45.7 percent of the vote. That was about 560 votes shy of Clinton.
Wilma Turner, chair of the local Democratic Party, said she was inspired by Clinton’s address following the primaries Tuesday.
“Well, Hillary won pretty big here in Georgia,” she said. “I did listen to her speech tonight and it was absolutely beautiful. She said all the right things.
“I think she has really benefited from Bernie running. She’s awake to a lot of the issues that it seems like some of the Republicans are just completely oblivious to.”
Though Forsyth is heavily conservative and Republican, Turner said things are improving for her party.
“We are gaining a lot of members,” she said. “The Democrats are not sitting in a little bitty room with just a handful of people anymore; we’ve got good crowds.
“We’ve got a lot of Democrats moving into Forsyth and actually coming over to our side I think. We just need to be right out there, and we want to be.”
Georgia was one of eight states to hold a primary on “Super Tuesday.” Due to a push from Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp to involve several other Southern states, Tuesday was also referred to as the “SEC Primary.”
Luth said that county voters will return to the polls this spring for elections that are closer to home.
“The next election is May 24, which is the local primaries for all the state offices and all the local counties,” she said. “They actually start qualifying next week on [March 7], so we’ll be jumping right into that one.”