Nov. 4 Muscogee voter turnout neared 42 percent

The final and official totals from the Nov. 4 General Election showed Muscogee County did not have a tsunami of voters flood the polls for two hotly contested statewide races pollsters once thought would be close calls.

Still Columbus' turnout of 41,954 out of 100,438 voters hit 41.77 percent. Not bad for a midterm election year with few local races on the ballot and only one citywide vote on allowing special tax zones for redevelopment.

"Four years ago we had 6,000 more people vote," said Nancy Boren, executive director of the Muscogee County Board of Elections and Registrations.

But that was in 2010, when city elections were on the November ballot and Mayor Teresa Tomlinson's first run in a three-candidate race went to a runoff. The Georgia General Assembly later shifted those elections to coincide with statewide party primaries, which this year were May 20.

"With all the publicity, you would think it would have been a little higher turnout," Boren said of this year's General Election, which brought major ad campaigns to Georgia as the two major political parties fought over Georgia's U.S. Senate seat vacated by Saxby Chambliss and incumbent Gov. Nathan Deal was challenged by former President Jimmy Carter's grandson Jason Carter.

But the Senate race between Republican David Perdue and Democrat Michelle Nunn did not drive voters to the polls in droves.

Still three Muscogee County precincts topped 50 percent: Wynnbrook had a 62.7 percent turnout; St. Mark-Heiferhorn had 53.7 percent; and Psalmond Road-Mathews had 53.04 percent.

But that's not unusual, Boren said.

"You've got certain precincts that turn out regardless, and that's usually Wynnbrook, St. Mark, and then St. John on the south side," she said.

The St. John-Belvedere precinct did not top 50 percent, but came close at 48.95.