Polls are open in Greenwich, state and Congressional races are undercard to presidential battle

UPDATED TUESDAY 1:45 PM — Storm damage from Hurricane Sandy certainly didn’t prove to be enough to stop Election Day and as of 6 a.m. the polls are open in Connecticut for races that have a lot of local attention.

In addition to four races for Greenwich’s legislative delegation to Hartford, Greenwich resident Linda McMahon is running for the U.S. Senate and Cos Cob’s Jim Himes is seeking his third term in the U.S. House of Representatives. Town officials have given the full go ahead for all the regularly scheduled polling places to be used in the wake of the storm’s heavy damage on Greenwich and both political parties are hoping to have a lot to celebrate tonight when the results start coming in shortly after the scheduled 8 p.m. close of the polls.

According to the town’s Registrar of Voters, as of noon there had been 39% turnout in town and by 1 p.m., with people voting on their lunch break, that number had risen to 43% of town. Of the 36,480 registered voters, there had been 15,656 heading out to the polls.  As of the 1 p.m. count, the district with the best numbers percentage wise was District 5 with a 49% turnout and in terms of sheer volume District 8 has had 1,769 voters turn out. The lowest number is in District 3 and District 9, both with a 38% turnout.

The Post will have full election coverage on Tuesday night. Check Greenwich-post.com and twitter.com/greeenwichpost for the latest information in the local, congressional and, of course, presidential races.

 

Locally, State Rep. Livvy Floren (R-149) is seeking her seventh term in office against Democratic challenger John Blankley, who has pointed to his successful record in both major corporations and owning a small business as an indication of what he could bring to Hartford. Ms. Floren has noted her bipartisan work and her strong stance against new and higher taxes. The 151st district also has a popular Republican incumbent in place as Rep. Fred Camillo is seeking his third term against Democrat David Rafferty, the president of the Old Greenwich Association and a longtime town volunteer. The 36th senate district is being defended by incumbent State Sen. L. Scott Frantz who is also looking for his third term in office against Stamford Democrat Daniel Dauplaise.

The 36th district covers all of Greenwich and portions of Stamford and New Canaan.

The 150th assembly district is an open seat with the retirement of State Rep. Lile Gibbons. Steve Walko, the former chairman of the Board of Estimate and Taxation, is the Republican candidate running against Democrat Stephanie Paulmeno, the former director of nursing at The Nathaniel Witherell and a longtime public health advocate.

No Democrat has been elected to the state legislature from Greenwich since Woodrow Wilson was president.

With the presence of Ms. McMahon and Mr. Himes in the races, Greenwich will also be keeping a close eye on the congressional races. Ms. McMahon has run a highly publicized race against Democratic U.S. Rep. Chris Murphy to replace the retiring Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.). The sheer volume of television ads from both candidates has attracted national notice and Ms. McMahon is now reported to have spent close to $100 million in this race and her unsuccessful 2010 campaign against U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). Recent polls have had Mr. Murphy in a lead, but Ms. McMahon is well positioned to potentially pull the upset off. Democrats may well have a nervous night ahead of them if power outage issues in Bridgeport impacts the vote in that Democratic stronghold.

Mr. Himes faces Westport businessman Steve Obsitnik in his race. Mr. Himes was first elected in 2008, defeating longtime incumbent Rep. Christopher Shays and in 2010 actually increased his margin of victory in his first reelection, a rare feat for a Democrat in that heavily Republican year. Now he faces the challenge from Mr. Obsitnik and while conventional wisdom has been that Mr. Himes is in a comfortable position, the national Republican party recently authorized more money to be sent to Mr. Obsitnik to boost his race, a sign they think the seat could potentially be vulnerable.

Despite power not being on in all of the town yet following the storm, all the town’s polling places are good to go.

Voters in the following districts can go to the following polling locations from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. to vote:

• District 1 – Julian Curtiss

• District 2 – Town Hall

• District 3 – Western Middle School

• District 4 – New Lebanon School

• District 5 – Riverside School

• District 6 – Old Greenwich School

• District 7 – Greenwich High School

• District 8 – Central Middle School

• District 9 – Bendheim Western Greenwich Civic Center

• District 10 – Glenville School

• District 11 – North Street School

• District 12 – North Mianus School

According to the town, residents with questions about voting and absentee ballots should call the Registrars of Voters at 203-622-7889. Questions about the availability of absentee ballots should be directed to the Town Clerk at 203-622-7897 for a discussion of possible options. Both offices will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday.

More information is available online at greenwichct.org/Government/Departments/Voter_Registration/.

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