Polls Open, High Turnout Expected In SW Pa.

Midterm elections could bring out 50-55% of registered voters

Paul Rasmussen
November 06, 2018 - 7:55 am
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Calvin L. Leake | Dreamstime.com

PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) — The polls are open and Pennsylvania voters are deciding who occupies the governor's office and helping to determine control of Congress.

There are expectations for relatively high turnout for today's midterm election. 8.6 million people are registered to vote. The state's highest turnout for a midterm election in the last 20 years was 50 percent in 2006. Turnout could exceed that number today, between 50-55 percent.

Democrats have the polling edge in three key races in Pennsylvania. For governor, Tom Wolf has a double-digit lead over Scott Wagner. For US Senate, Bob Casey leads Congressman Lou Barletta. And Conor Lamb has the advantage over Keith Rothfus in the new 17th Congressional District race.

In other US House races, Republican State Senator Guy Reschenthaler faces Democrat Bibiana Boerio in the new 14th District. And in the new 16th Congressional district, Republican incumbent Mike Kelly and Democrat Ron DiNicola are in a very close contest.

Allegheny County voters will be asked to approve a property tax increase to generate about $18 million to create the county Children’s Fund to pay for social services programs.

There are also questions for voters in Bethel Park, Monroeville and West Deer to decide.

More than 30 polling places have changed locations in Allegheny County since May. Voters in affected districts were notified of the changes by mail. They can also check their polling places at votesPA.com

Related: Interactive Election Results 2018

That’s also where voters can check their registration status and district, file an election complaint or contact local election office, and read up on voting rights.

If voters in any of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties experience difficulty or intimidation in any way at the polls, the state Attorney General urges them to contact their local District Attorney.

Officials have seen calibration issues with some voting machines throughout Allegheny Co. Some machines are not properly reading voters’ selections. If this occurs, voters should notify an election official immediately.

Voters are also urged to check their ballot selections before casting their final vote. The opportunity to do so will come after all selections have been made.

There's an emphasis on security in this election. State Auditor General Eugene DePasquale says Pennsylvania was 1 of 21 states "the Russians tried to hack." He says it is his "job... to make sure our system is as secure as possible." He will be monitoring Tuesday’s elections.

Don’t worry, it’s not too late to brush up on the ballot.

iVoters.com, operated by American Policy Roundtable, creates a personalized ballot based on a street address, linking users to candidates’ websites, legislative history, endorsements , and campaign finance information.

Vote411, run by the League of Women Voters, also informs voters on ballot issues and polling place based on street address.

Lyft and Uber are offering discounted rides to the polls.

Get your Lyft promo code here for up to $5 off. Lyft will also offer free rides to underserved communities "that face significant obstacles to transportation."

Use the code VOTE2018 in the Uber app for up to $10 off a ride to the polls.

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Jennifer Bloodworth contributed to this article. 

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