Early voting turnout remains strong in Clark County

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We'll begin at Galleria Mall, where this is a very important day. It's 19-year-old Reagan Rice's first time voting.

News 3 met him at one of the early voting sites that are set up throughout Clark County.

"It feels good. Was a great experience. Never done it before so I enjoyed it," he said.

His beaming mom was there, snapping pictures on her cell phone.

Reagan is one of the thousands of locals who have voted early, and more this year are voting.

To compare apples to apples, during the last midterm primary in 2014, almost 62,000Clark County residents voted early.

This year, with still three days to go, we surpassed it. By 3 p.m. more than 65,000 locals have already voted.

In Nevada’s most populous county, more Democrats have turned out than Republicans, where they enjoy a roughly 158,000 voter registration edge.

"The Democratic turnout may have the advantage in that it has the most interesting statewide primary," says UNLV Associate Professor of History Michael Green, referring to the increasingly nasty clash between two Clark County Commissioners: Chris Giunchigliani and Steve Sisolak. Both want to be your next governor.

There are other hot contests: Republicans also have a primary for governor. There’s also a hot GOP faceoff for Congress in District 3, and a hot Democratic faceoff for Congress in District 4.

And you're not just narrowing the field. "We are electing people, too," says Sondra Cosgrove, the President of the League of Women Voters of Southern Nevada.

In the non-partisan contests, "judges, the sheriff, school trustees, justice of the peace, assessor, there's a whole range," Cosgrove says, where contests could be decided outright.

In those instances, in contests where there are only two candidates, the winner wins. If there’s more than two, the person with more than 50 percent of the vote wins. If no candidate exceeds that threshold, the top two advance to November.

This primary also features another wrinkle: thanks to a state Senate bill that passed in 2015, if only one party fields two candidates for an office, that contest moves from the November election to the June primary.

"Whoever wins becomes the elected official," Cosgrove said.

In Clark County, the race for District Attorney features only two Democrats: incumbent Steve Wolfson and challenger Robert Langford. Because primary voters can only vote for partisan races based on their registration, "that means the Democrats who turn out and vote get to decide for everybody who the D.A. is," says Cosgrove.

Early voting runs through Friday evening, with the primary taking place on Tuesday, June 12.

Tuesday’s voting will feature the rollout of Clark County’s "vote center" system, which replaces assigned polling places. Voters will be able to vote at any polling location in Clark County.

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