HAMTRAMCK- So far, a low number of voters showed up at the Hamtramck precincts for this year’s primary.
According to City Clerk August Gitschlag, there are 1385 registered voters in precinct 1, 2076 in precinct 2, 1635 in precinct 3, 2738 in precinct 4, 1131 in precinct 5, 1099 in precinct 6 and 1421 in precinct 7.
A total of 1189 absentee voter ballots had been issued. 88 percent of them were returned on time, while 12 percent were returned late.
“It’s not the presidential election,” a poll worker said at around 8:40 a.m. “I don’t think anyone really knows its Election Day.”
11 people had voted at precinct 1, which is located at the housing administration building. By noon, only 31 extra votes were cast. Poll workers said they are disappointed in the turnout at all their city precincts so far.
Andrea Karpinski, who is running for city council again, has been campaigning with a group of volunteers outside the building since about 7:45 a.m.
Her father, a former councilman in 1997 and 1998, said back then there were 37 precincts. Now it’s easier for candidates to interact with voters because there are only seven precincts, he said.
Precincts 2, 3 and 4 at the Community Center on 11350 Charest St. had 79 votes, 67 votes and 105 votes respectively, as of 11:40 a.m.
A poll worker at a precinct 4 table said they will most likely have a 25 to 50 percent increase in voter turnout.
Inside each building in the highly immigrant populated city, you can find Arabic and Bengali signs that direct voters to the precincts or assure them that the workers know either language.
Poll workers believe voters will show up in larger numbers at lunch and after work, between 4 to 6 p.m.
As of 9:45 a.m., precinct 5 had 31 and precinct 7 had 20 votes. By 12:45 p.m., 91 votes were cast at precinct 5 and 77 at precinct 7.
Both are located at the Senior Plaza, where you can find city council candidate Fadel Al-Marsoumi outside interacting with voters.
He said he will be out at the precincts all day.
Workers inside the plaza said it was much busier during the presidential election.
20 votes were cast at precinct 6 at the People’s Community Center as of 10 a.m. Poll workers there believe that more voters will arrive after afternoon prayer at the mosque.