Coronavirus On The Minds Of Voters During Tuesday’s Primary

Judy Kramer
County Reporter
Primary elections were held on Tuesday, March 10, in six states, amid concerns about the coronavirus crisis. But, election officials made sure that hand sanitizers were available at the polls, and that other precautions were taken. The six states where voters went to the polls were Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, and Washington. Although Missouri has only identified one case of coronavirus, local election officials are treating polling sites like they do when voting takes place during flu season.“Alcohol wipes were sent to all seven precincts so pens, styluses and voting booths could be wiped clean after use by each voter,” said Susan Porterfield, Benton County Clerk. “We had alsoincluded germ-x wipes in the polling site supplies.”The Springfield News-Leader reported in a March 9 article that in Greene County, Missouri, the county clerk’s office encouraged voters to bring their own ballpoint pen and hand sanitizer to their election site. Greene County Clerk Shane Schoeller, was quoted as stating “We just want to make sure that voters feel safe and confident to exercise their right to vote and have a great experience when they go to the polls to cast their ballot in the Presidential Preference Primary.” The court clerk also said that her office was taking steps to be proactive in light of recent news coverage about the potential spread of viruses like influenza, the common cold, and of course thecoronavirus.“Go to the polls,” Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft said in a March 10 article by “I would, as politely as possible, tell people to follow through on their responsibility to participate and help to continue to make this state and this country are the best they can be.”Michigan state officials sent a memo to its election clerks urging poll workers to distribute hand sanitizers and wipes, plus keep latex gloves at the polling places and wipe down voting equipment. The Mississippi secretary of state advised voters to use basic hygiene when going to the polls, urging them to make sure they washed their hands as often as possible, and urged all Mississippians to go vote. In Washington, the state at the center of the U.S. coronavirus crisis, election officials are emphasizing similar sanitary practices and precautions. They also urged those voters who sent in mail-in ballots to use water or a sponge to seal them (instead of licking 
the envelopes). However, on March 9, David Partenheimer, the manager of public relations at theU.S. Postal Service, said that “both the surgeon general and the director of the National Institute for Allergies and Infectious Diseases have indicated that there is currently no evidence that the coronavirus can spread through the mail.The results of voting on March 10 for the Presidential Primary in Benton County is as follows:
Out of 13,886 registered voters, 2,761 ballots were recorded.
Constitution Party
Don J. Grundmann, 1, 100%
Don Blankenship, 0, 0%
Uncommitted, 0 0%
Green Party
Howie Hawkins, 0, 0%
Dario Hunter, 0, 0%
David Rolde, 0, 0%
Uncommitted, 0, 0%
Libertarian Party
Jacob Hornberger, 2, 100%
Uncommitted, 0, 0%
Democratic Party
Amy Klobuchar, 12, 0.99%
Tom Steyer, 2, 0.17%
Tulsi Gabbard, 10, 0.83%
Leonard J. Steinman II, 0, 0%
Cory Booker, 0, 0%
Joseph R. Biden, 843, 69.55%
Elizabeth Warren, 8, 0.66%
Pete Buttigieg, 15, 1.24%
Bernie Sanders, 279, 23.02%
Velma Steinman, 0, 0%
Henry Hewes, 0, 0%
Andrew Yang, 1, 0.08%
Roque De La Fuente, 0, 0%
John K. Delaney, 1, 0.08%
Julian Castro, 0, 0%
Deval Patrick, 0, 0%
Marianne Williamson, 0, 0%
Michael Bennet, 0, 0%
Michael R. Bloomberg, 27, 2.23%
Steve Burke, 0, 0%
Robby Wells, 0, 0%
William C. (Bill) Haas, 0, 0%
Uncommitted, 14, 1.16%
Republican Party
Donald J. Trump, 1,518, 98.44%
Bob Ely, 2, 0.13%
Bill Weld, 3, 0.19%
Joe Walsh, 8, 0.52%
Matthew John Matern, 0, 0%
Uncommitted, 11, 0.71%