Voting slow on Primary Day

Machine tender May Wilson stands ready with "I Voted" stickers at the District 2 polls at Harbor School in New London Tuesday, August 12, 2014.
Machine tender May Wilson stands ready with "I Voted" stickers at the District 2 polls at Harbor School in New London Tuesday, August 12, 2014. Sean D. Elliot/The Day

Connecticut Republicans started trickling to the polls this morning as they choose between Greenwich businessman Tom Foley and Senate Minority Leader John McKinney of Fairfield to challenge first-term Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy in the November general election.

Republicans also must choose their nominees for lieutenant governor and comptroller.

In Groton, the Republican turnout was slow.

At the Groton City Municipal building, 13 registered Republicans had voted by 8:45 a.m., and 16 had voted at the West Side Middle School shortly after 9 a.m.

Donna Pearlman said she voted for Foley and for lieutenant governor candidate Heather Bond Somers, who is a member of the Groton Town Council.

“This primary is really important for Republicans,” she said. “As a small business owner, I think Tom Foley will understand our needs. I like his economic policies.”

Pearlman said Bond Somers is a proven leader and has done a good job for the state.

Members of both parties will get to vote in a number of regional and local races across the state, including races for state Senate and House of Representatives, along with races for probate judge and registrar of voters.

In the 20th state Senate District Democratic primary, Rep. Betsy Ritter and New London Democratic Town Chairman Bill Satti are running.

Shortly after 6 a.m., Ritter was the first to cast her vote at the Quaker Hill School. She said she planned to visit the Senate district’s polling places throughout the day.

“This is an opportunity to make a decision on who will run in November,” she said. “This is an opportunity to help frame decisions for the state’s future.”

Turnout at the Quaker Hill School was also low. Only four people had voted by 6:23 a.m.

Michael and Ida McCue both said they voted for Ritter.

“She has been a supporter of our area for a long time,” said Michael McCue.

Ida McCue jokingly said, “She’s for the women.”

Over at New London’s second voting district, at the former Harbor School, the voter turnout wasn’t any better — about 20 people had voted by 6:45 a.m.

Deborah Pudlo said she rarely misses an opportunity to vote. She said she likes both Satti and Ritter, but opted to vote for Ritter.

“I wanted someone different ... to move away from the Democratic establishment,” she said.

The polls have been quiet in Norwich throughout the morning, with just 92 Republican voters casting ballots as of 10 a.m. today, a 4.3 percent turnout.

A slightly higher turnout of 5.2 percent, 18 voters, cast ballots in  Precinct 1 at the John M. Moriarty School, where in addition to making selections for governor and lieutenant governor nominees, voters are choosing a candidate for the 47th District state House of Representatives.

"We have two precincts where only five people have voted so far," said Republican Registrar Dianne Slopak.​

Polls close at 8 p.m.

i.larraneta@theday.com

twitter: @larraneta

Two voters fill out their ballots at the District 2 polls at Harbor School in New London Tuesday, August 12, 2014.
Two voters fill out their ballots at the District 2 polls at Harbor School in New London Tuesday, August 12, 2014. Sean D. Elliot/The Day
Checker Nancy Gilly, right, and ballot clerk Chuck Stevens keep themselves entertained as they await more voters at the district 6 polls at S.B. Butler Elementary School in Mystic Tuesday, August 12, 2014.
Checker Nancy Gilly, right, and ballot clerk Chuck Stevens keep themselves entertained as they await more voters at the district 6 polls at S.B. Butler Elementary School in Mystic Tuesday, August 12, 2014. Sean D. Elliot/The Day
Betsy Ritter, left image, greets supporters Larry and Susan Goldman, of Norwich, outside the District 2 polls at Quaker Hill School in Waterford Tuesday, August 12, 2014.  Ritter is vying with Bill Satti for the Democratic nomination for the 20th state senate seat. Democratic State Senate candidate Bill Satti, image right, holds a door for New London resident Joanna Norris after Satti cast his vote in the Connecticut Primary at the Nathan Hale Arts Magnet School in New London Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014.
Betsy Ritter, left image, greets supporters Larry and Susan Goldman, of Norwich, outside the District 2 polls at Quaker Hill School in Waterford Tuesday, August 12, 2014. Ritter is vying with Bill Satti for the Democratic nomination for the 20th state senate seat. Democratic State Senate candidate Bill Satti, image right, holds a door for New London resident Joanna Norris after Satti cast his vote in the Connecticut Primary at the Nathan Hale Arts Magnet School in New London Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014. Sean D. Elliot and Tim Cook/The Day

Polling Places

East Lyme

District 1, 2 and 3: Community Center, 37 Society Road

Groton

District 1: Groton Public Library, Route 117

District 2: West Side Middle School, 250 Brandegee Ave.

District 3: City Municipal Building, 295 Meridian St.

District 4: Mary Morrisson Elementary School, 154 Toll Gate Road

District 5: School Administration Building, 1300 Flanders Road, Mystic

District 6: S.B. Butler School, 155 Ocean View Ave., Mystic

District 7: Town Hall Annex, 134 Groton Long Point Road

Ledyard

District 1: Ledyard Center School, 740 Colonel Ledyard Highway

Districts 2 and 3: Juliet W. Long School, 1854 Route 12

Lyme

Lyme Fire House, 213 Hamburg Road

Montville

Republicans: statewide offices at all polling places

Democrats: 20th state Senate District only at Town Hall and Fair Oaks School

Districts 1 and 6: Town Hall gymnasium, 310 Norwich-New London Turnpike

Districts 2 and 5: Mohegan Firehouse, 2029 Norwich-New London Turnpike

Districts 3 and 4: Fair Oaks School, 836 Old Colchester Road

New London

District 1: New London High School, 490 Jefferson Ave.

District 2: Harbor School, 432 Montauk Ave.

District 3: Nathan Hale School, 37 Beech Drive

North Stonington

New Town Hall, 40 Main St.

Norwich

Republicans: statewide offices and, in Precinct 1, 47th state House District

Precinct 1: John M. Moriarty School , 20 Lawler Lane

Precinct 2: Kelly Middle School , 25 Mahan Drive

Precinct 3: Samuel Huntington Elementary School , 80 W. Town St.

Precinct 4: John B. Stanton Elementary School, 386 New London Turnpike

Precinct 5: St. Mark's Lutheran Church hall, 248 Broadway

Precinct 6: AHEPA Community Center, 380 Hamilton Ave.

Old Lyme

Cross Lane Fire House, 14 Cross Lane

Preston

Town Hall, 389 Route 2

Salem

Town Offices, 270 Hartford Road

Stonington

District 1: Stonington Borough Firehouse, 100 Main St.

District 2: Pawcatuck Firehouse, 33 Liberty St.

District 3: Deans Mill School, 35 Deans Mill Road

District 4: B.F. Hoxie firehouse, 34 Broadway Ave., Mystic

District 5: School Administration Building, 49 North Stonington Road, Old Mystic

Waterford

District 1: Town Hall, 15 Rope Ferry Road

District 2: Quaker Hill Elementary School, 285 Bloomingdale Road

District 3: Oswegatchie Elementary School, 470 Boston Post Road

District 4: Great Neck Elementary School, 165 Great Neck Road

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