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What’s on the Ballot in the Tri-States


Election Day has arrived in the tri-state region as election volunteers arrived early at local polling sites, powering up voting machines and setting up registration tables. Thousands of people cast early ballots, but even more will get in line before the polls close at 7 pm in Illinois and Missouri and at 9 pm in Iowa.

Tri States Public Radio's on-air election coverage will begin at 7 p.m.

Southeast Iowa: 

The most talked about issue in this part of the state is the $8.5-million dollar courthouse bond referendum in Lee County. The new building would replace the existing, historic courthouses in Keokuk and Fort Madison. 60% approval is required for the new courthouse to be approved.

Elsewhere in Lee County, voters will select a new sheriff due to the upcoming retirement of Jim Sholl at the end of his current term.

Throughout Lee and Des Moines Counties, voters will help determine the balance of power in the Iowa Legislature as four of the six seats representing the two counties are contested.

  • Senate District 42 : Incumbent Rich Taylor (D-Mount Pleasant) vs. Danny Graber (R-Mount Pleasant)
  • Senate District 44: Incumbent Tom Courtney (D-Burlington) vs. Thomas Greene (R-Burlington)
  • House District 84: Incumbent Dave Heaton (R-Mt. Pleasant) vs. Carrie Duncan (D-New London)
  • House District 88: Ryan Drew (D-Des Moines County) vs. David Kerr (R-Morning Sun).

The auditor's offices in both counties said, Monday afternoon, they were extremely busy with several hundred people voting early in each county. Overall, roughly 8,000 Lee County residents voted early while the number was nearly 9,000 in Des Moines County.
Iowa offers same day registration with two forms of ID, one of which must have a current address such as a utility bill.

West-Central Illinois:

There are contested legislative races through west central Illinois, including one drawing nearly $1-million in campaign contributions.

Incumbent Norrine Hammond (R-Macomb) is facing her first challenger in House District 93 since being appointed to the post. John Curtis (D-Macomb) is a farmer and teacher at Western Illinois University. The competitive race has generated nearly a million dollars in campaign contributions.

Meanwhile, Dan Swanson (R-Alpha) and Bill Butts (D-Galesburg) are vying to replace retiring State Rep. Don Moffit (R-Gilson) in House District 74 and in House District 94, incumbent Randy Freese (R-Paloma) is being challenged by Bobby Pritchett (D-Roseville). 

There are also contested races for U.S. Senate and for Illinois Comptroller. And in McDonough County, residents will decide whether to implement a 1% sales tax increase to support area schools.

Same-day voter registration is available in Illinois with two valid forms of ID, one of which must have a current address. The state is reporting record turnout for early voting this year.

Northeast Missouri:

Voters have plenty of choices to make up and down the ballot in the Show-Me State, especially statewide.

  • U.S. Senate
  • Governor
  • Lt. Governor
  • Secretary of State
  • Treasurer

Republican Congressman Sam Graves faces three opponents in his bid to retain his seat representing the 6th District, which stretches from the state's western border to its eastern border including Clark and Lewis Counties.
Closer to home, Clark County residents are selecting a new sheriff with Paul Gaudette not seeking re-election and the city of Wayland needs permission to borrow up to $1-million for water and sewer improvements.

Clark County Clerk Jena Church said about 350 people voted early.

Tri States Public Radio's on-air election coverage will begin at 7 p.m.

Emily Boyer is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.