Getting Ready for Primary Day

[audio:|titles=S12 Watkins election workers]

Concord, N.H. (Jan. 9, 2012)–To get ready for its Big Day in American politics, New Hampshire fields a small army. WATD’s Amand Watkins has the details.

On Primary Day, about 250,000  Republicans and at least 75,000 Democrats are expected to go to the polls. To make New Hampshire’s primary run smoothly, it takes 6,000 local election officials and volunteers.  Tuesday will be a busy day for these workers.  David Scanlon is the Deputy Secretary of State for New Hampshire. He says working on the day of the primary is a major time commitment.

“On Election Day itself it is a very long day for all election officials. There are some polls in the state that open at 6 o’clock in the morning.”
(Dave Scanlon, Deputy Secretary of State)

And waking up earlier is the least of their responsibilities.

“In most cases, they are there until the polls close at either 7 or 8 o’clock in the evening.  And then whatever time it takes to count the votes at the end of the night, prepare the returns that have to come to this office early the next morning, and the proper sealing of the ballots in secure boxes.”
(Dave Scanlon, Deputy Secretary of State)

Scanlon says the primary couldn’t happen without these workers.

“It’s those individuals that we rely on to conduct our election statewide.”
(Dave Scanlon, Deputy Secretary of State)

Many of the people that work on election day are volunteers or temporary workers who are paid very little for the long day. They do everything from keeping ballots safe to helping people register to vote on the same day as the election.

In Manchester, New Hampshire, Amanda Watkins WATD News.

(Amanda Watkins, a graduate student in the broadcast and digital journalism program at Syracuse University, is covering the New Hampshire primary for WATD Radio.)


This entry was posted in Spring 2012. Bookmark the permalink.