PHOENIX — Voters across Arizona came out to the polls on Tuesday in order to cast their vote for their party representatives in a number of races.
Those races include Democratic and Republican primaries for U.S. Senate as well as Congressional primaries and other statewide races.
Independent voters are able to choose which party they would like to vote in.
Politicians in tight races should not expect final results from Arizona’s primary election for at least a few days, a regular occurrence in the state even though it sees the vast majority of voters cast ballots by mail.
That’s because many of those voting by mail cling to the habit of dropping off their ballots at the polls on Election Day rather than mail them in.
Those ballots take time to process, using a labor-intensive procedure to verify signatures on envelopes and then opening them to process the actual ballot.
The above article is from The Associated Press.
More primary ballots counted
Maricopa County updated the unofficial results at 5:30 p.m. The new tally still shows a dead heat between Joe Arpaio and Jerry Sheridan for the Republican nomination for sheriff.
Just 541 ballots separate the two candidates out of a pool of nearly 400,000. Sheridan maintains a slim lead while the remaining candidate Mike Crawford remains a distant third.
You can see the full results here.
More Maricopa County results to be released after 5 p.m.
8 a.m. Wednesday
McSally challenges Kelly to 7 debates
Republican Sen. Martha McSally is challenging Mark Kelly to seven debates and is claiming her Democratic rival has been evading scrutiny.
McSally on Wednesday proposed an unusually large number of debates for a sitting senator with the bully-pulpit advantage of incumbency.
McSally must overcome a fundraising and polling deficit in a race that will help determine control of the U.S. Senate.
Several other vulnerable GOP senators have similarly proposed a large number of debates.
Kelly's campaign manager did not directly respond to the proposal for seven debates.
She says he's accepted one debate invitation, is pursuing another and looks forward to debating McSally.
The above article is from The Associated Press.
Maricopa County says vote count will continue into Wednesday
Maricopa County elections officials said the vote count will continue into the Wednesday morning hours.
As of 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, 73 of 99 voting centers still hadn’t reported results.
About 700,000 ballots were cast before Tuesday. They have been counted and reported.
McSally dominates challenger McCarthy
Arizona Sen. Martha McSally has won Tuesday's Republican primary race against challenger Daniel McCarthy, according to the Associated Press, clearing her way to face Democrat Mark Kelly in the 2020 United States Senate special election in Arizona.
Tight GOP primary race for Maricopa County sheriff
Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is in a dead heat with his former top deputy Jerry Sheridan.
The winner of the primary will face incumbent Paul Penzone in November.
Polls have closed across Arizona, and the first results from the election are expected at 8 p.m.
Maricopa County voters cast ballots early
Maricopa County data shows 90% to 95% of voters will have cast a ballot before Primary Day, via mail or in person. It was 85% in 2018. There were 555,844 ballots cast in the 2016 Maricopa County primary and more than 700,000 cast by August 1 of this year.
In Mohave County, polling location numbers are consistent with 2016 numbers, but increased early ballots will result in a higher voter turnout. As of 4 p.m., there were no reports of long lines at 37 polling locations, despite a smaller crew working.
Voters share experiences voting in Maricopa County
Voters at Burton Barr Library in downtown Phoenix said they felt safe voting on Tuesday, thanks to the precautions that elections officials took ahead of time.
According to Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes, poll workers have been on the job since early July at walk-in voting centers. The county also ordered almost $200,000 worth of cleaning supplies.
“I absolutely felt safe,” a voter said on her way out.
A volunteer let 12 News know inside, “They have cleaners. And they’re just going around cleaning up the tables and the voting booths.”
Another voter added: “The sharpies -- they were taking them and disinfecting them. They had hand sanitizer; yeah, it was great.”
Masks are also available for anyone who needs one. However, a voter can refuse to wear a mask and exercise their right to vote.
If that were to happen, Fontes said, “We're going to try to get them in and out as quickly as possible to protect people from possible transmission of Covid-19.”
But so far, that appears to be a non-issue.
“Everyone was already masked up. and I don’t think there was any patron that walked in that was expecting to not wear one,” a voter shared outside the polling place.
Problems resolved at Gilbert voting center
Elections officials said poll workers had issues entering a secure passcode to turn on the precinct’s tabulators.
That occurred at the vote center at the American Leadership Academy in Gilbert.
Technicians were dispatched at 5:45 am. and voters were able to check-in and vote at 6 am, officials said.
The machine was running again by 7 am. Nearly 50 people had cast their ballots as of 7:15 am., officials said.
Technical issues resolved on Maricopa County's website
The early voting ballot status webpage on Maricopa County's elections website appeared to be down on Tuesday morning, but was quickly fixed.
People looking to check the status of their ballot may have seen the below message early Tuesday.
It was back up and running by 7 a.m.
Elections officials said the issue was that the backend of the website is tied to the election cycle and the code was looking towards the general election.
Voting will look a little different this time around, due to the COVID-19 outbreak and the guidelines that polling locations must follow in order to keep voters safe.
Polls will be open until 7 p.m. You can vote at any polling location. Anyone with a mail-in ballot who did not get it in the mail in time can also drop them off at the polls by 7 p.m. to be counted.
Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes said poll workers have been on the job since early July -- days after early ballots were mailed out -- at dozens of walk-in voting centers.
The centers are a pandemic-inspired innovation to spread out the walk-up vote in hopes of avoiding a crush on election day.
“They’ve got their routines down, they know how to clean off equipment already, they know how to set up and operate stuff day in and day out,” Fontes said during an interview Monday.
Fontes said he ordered almost $200,000 worth of cleaning supplies.
If workers can’t make it Tuesday, he said, the county is ready with backups.
Several voting centers are at large shopping malls, to accommodate social distancing. The Maricopa County Board approved leasing the spaces.