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November 06. 2012 6:02PM

Epping expects vote to top 2008, with 232 newly registered so far

EPPING – Voter turnout in this year’s presidential election is expected to surpass the number of voters who cast ballots in 2008, local election officials said.

Nearly 3,000 voters had cast ballots by 5 p.m. with the number expected to rise as people hit the polls after work.

“It’s been very steady,” said Town Moderator Bob Goodrich.

The day began with long lines wrapping around Epping Middle School when the polls opened at 8 a.m. Selectman Karen Falcone said voters continued to stream into the polls throughout the morning.

The town started the day with 4,040 registered voters, but had added 232 new registered voters by 4 p.m.

Some 3,348 votes were cast in Epping when President Obama was elected in 2008, but election officials said they expected the number to be even higher this year.

Outside the polls, candidates pressed the flesh in hopes of garnering some last-minute support. They included 20-year-old Mark Andrews, a Democratic candidate for state representative and one of the youngest candidates running this year.

Andrews, a sophomore at Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass., said running a campaign as a young college student has been an interesting experience and has helped his friends become more interested in the political process.

“They’re getting way more into it, especially with me running,” he said. “It takes a young person to bring young people out.”

As Andrews and his Republican opponents, Jeffrey Harris and incumbent Jason Antosz, stood outside in the cold with their campaign signs, voters like Independent Greg Riley, a social studies teacher at Spaulding High School in Rochester, weighed the local and national issues before casting their votes.

Riley said he voted for Obama and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Maggie Hassan.

“I think he’s done well,” he said of Obama. “I think he inherited a total disaster. He’s tried his hardest.”


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