The Latest: Douglas County sees strong turnout, few problems

Published 11-06-2018

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - The Latest on Nebraska's general election (all times local):

3:55 p.m.

Voter turnout in Nebraska's largest county is slightly higher than expected so far on Election Day, particularly in Omaha's Republican-heavy western suburbs and pockets of Democratic-leaning north Omaha.

Douglas County Election Commissioner Brian Kruse says most polling places had seen between 150 and 200 voters apiece as of noon. Kruse called it, "Brisk - more than normal, but not presidential-year numbers."

Kruse says more than 80,000 voters have received early-voting ballots or voted early in person. That's more than double the number that cast an early ballot in the 2014 midterm election.

Kruse had projected the county would receive about 65,000 early ballots. Both major political parties made a concerted effort this year to lock in as many early votes as possible.

The county will continue to accept early ballots at its drop-box locations until 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Kruse says his office has encountered a few small problems when poll workers called in sick, but overall the election is running smoothly.

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12:25 p.m.

A Lincoln man who describes himself as a nonpartisan voter says he voted against the Medicaid measure because expanding the program would crowd out those who need it most.

Seventy-one-year-old Brad Ferguson said Tuesday after voting that he th

The county will continue to accept early ballots at its drop-box locations until 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Kruse says his office has encountered a few small problems when poll workers called in sick, but overall the election is running smoothly.

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12:25 p.m.

A Lincoln man who describes himself as a nonpartisan voter says he voted against the Medicaid measure because expanding the program would crowd out those who need it most.

Seventy-one-year-old Brad Ferguson said Tuesday after voting that he thinks the current program already serves too many people and that expanding it would "let more people get on that don't deserve it."

Ferguson also says he voted for Democrats Bob Krist in the governor's race and Jane Raybould for U.S. Senate because he thinks Democrats are needed to balance out the GOP's political power in the President Donald Trump era.

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12:20 p.m.

A man who moved to Omaha for a medical residency says he intended to vote for incumbent Republican Don Bacon in the 2nd Congressional District race.

John Weseman said Tuesday that Bacon appeals more to his Libertarian ideals a

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12:25 p.m.

A Lincoln man who describes himself as a nonpartisan voter says he voted against the Medicaid measure because expanding the program would crowd out those who need it most.

Seventy-one-year-old Brad Ferguson said Tuesday after voting that he thinks the current program already serves too many people and that expanding it would "let more people get on that don't deserve it."

Ferguson also says he voted for Democrats Bob Krist in the governor's race and Jane Raybould for U.S. Senate because he thinks Democrats are needed to balance out the GOP's political power in the President Donald Trump era.

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12:20 p.m.

A man who moved to Omaha for a medical residency says he intended to vote for incumbent Republican Don Bacon in the 2nd Congressional District race.

John Weseman said Tuesday that Bacon appeals more to his Libertarian ideals and morals than Democrat Kara Eastman.

Weseman also says he tends to support Republicans so he intended to vote for Gov. Pete Ricketts. Weseman says "it seems like Ricketts has been doing OK."

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10:15 a.m.

A 57-year-old auto parts courier says he supported the incumbents in Tuesday's top races.

Leo Liekhus said after voting in northwest Omaha that he backed the officeholders because he's comfortable with the jobs they are doing.

He voted to give U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer another six-year term in Washington, saying, "She's been in there, and I haven't heard anything bad about her."

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9:50 a.m.

A 20-year-old University of Nebraska-Lincoln student says he voted for all the Democratic candidates on his ballot because of his disgust with President Donald Trump.

Ryan Pawloski is studying broadcast journalism, and he said after voting Tuesday that he's deeply uncomfortable with the president's remarks that reporters are "enemies of the people."

Pawloski, who grew up in Hastings, says he also voted for the measure to expand Medicaid in Nebraska, seeing it as a way to help the working poor.

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8 a.m.

Polls have opened in Nebraska as voters statewide prepare to decide on races for governor, Congress and whether to expand the state's Medicaid system.

Ballots can be cast until 8 p.m. Tuesday - 7 p.m. Mountain Time.

One measure in the hands of voters is whether to expand Medicaid health coverage to an estimated 90,000 low-income residents who don't qualify for the current program but earn too much to get federal tax subsidies that would help them afford insurance on their own.

Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts is seeking re-election against Democratic state Sen. Bob Krist of Omaha. GOP Sen. Deb Fischer is seeking a new term as well, facing off against Democratic hopeful Jane Raybould.

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