John Merrill: 1.2 million voted in Alabama’s presidential primary

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2016 SEC Primary

Secretary of State John Merrill, instrumental in creating the SEC Primary, which lumps several Southern states’ primaries together to give a louder voice to Southern voters, celebrated the state’s accomplishments Wednesday.

“For the first time in the history of our state, all 67 counties committed to participate in electronic election night reporting,” Merrill said in a news release. “This launch would not have been possible without everyone’s full support and outstanding leadership demonstrated by our Probate Judges and local election officials.”

Indeed, just as the polls were closing at 7 p.m. Wednesday, the Secretary’s website began displaying real-time election results.

According to Merrill’s statement, there was 100 percent participation in the night’s election reporting. Inclement weather some counties created unexpected delays in reporting, though. However, Merrill’s office deployed necessary staff to help counties ensure accurate results.

“1.2 million citizens participated in Alabama’s election March 1,” Merrill said. “This is without a doubt the largest number our state has ever seen in a presidential primary. We attribute this enthusiastic response to the SEC Primary and the excitement that our people have demonstrated as the presidential candidates came to our state and interacted with our people.”

All of the major presidential candidates visited the state to campaign, including Tuesday night victors billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

“We look forward to an exciting and engaged General Election in November,” Merrill said.

Primary Run-off contests will be held April 12 and the General Election will take place Nov. 8.

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