Deadline is Friday to register for voting March 9

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 5, 2004

[2/5/04]The deadline for Warren County residents to register to vote in Mississippi’s March 9 primaries for president and U.S. representative is Friday at 5 p.m.

Registration takes place in the circuit clerk’s office on the second floor of the county courthouse at Cherry and Grove streets.

Louisiana, which has an open-primary system, will hold its presidential primary on March 9, but congressional primary election voting will be Nov. 2, the day of this year’s general election. If no candidate wins a majority in that primary, the top vote-getters will meet in a Dec. 4 runoff.

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Citizens of area counties may register to vote until noon Saturday. The circuit clerks’ offices in Claiborne, Sharkey and Issaquena counties will be open from 8 a.m. until noon that day.

Mississippi voters do not register by political party and may vote in either primary.

In order to vote in a Louisiana party primary, on the other hand, a voter must be registered as a member of that party’s primary.

Louisiana citizens have until close-of-business Monday to register to vote in, or to change their party of preference for, that state’s presidential primary.

Voters in the Mississippi Democratic primary will see the names of eight presidential candidates, Wesley Clark, Howard Dean, John Edwards, John F. Kerry, Dennis Kucinich, Lyndon LaRouche, Joe Lieberman and Al Sharpton. Those in the 2nd Congressional District, which includes Warren County and surrounding areas, will see the name of one candidate, Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Bolton.

Republican voters statewide will see the name of one presidential candidate, President George W. Bush. In the 2nd District, voters will see the names of three congressional candidates, James Broadwater, Clinton B. LeSueur and Stephanie Summers-O’Neal.

Louisiana’s Democratic presidential candidate list includes the same names as in Mississippi, except Sharpton. One additional candidate, Bill McGaughey, will be on Louisiana ballots. Its Republican primary will also include Bill Wyatt as a candidate.

The U.S. Senate seat currently held by U.S. Sen. John Breaux, D-La., is also up for election. The filing period for candidacy for it and all Louisiana seats in the U.S. House of Representatives will be Aug. 4-6. No election is scheduled for a U.S. Senate seat from Mississippi until 2006. Senators serve staggered six-year terms.

Other Mississippi offices that are up for election this year are some members of county school boards, who serve, staggered, the Vicksburg Warren School District Board of Trustees from districts 1 and 5, county election commissioners from all districts and two state Supreme Court justices from Mississippi’s Central District.

Voters will see candidates for those offices on ballots in the Nov. 2 general election. The voter-registration deadline for that election is either Oct. 1 or, at the option of each county’s circuit clerk, Oct. 2.

Qualifying for the school-board seats begins Aug. 4 and ends Sept. 3. The two seats that will be up for election are held by District 1 trustee Chad Barrett and District 5’s Kay Aasand. No candidates had qualified by Tuesday to run for election commissioner.

Elections for Mississippi Supreme Court Justice are nonpartisan. Terms last for eight years. The deadline for candidates to qualify is May 7.