"As of 6 p.m., we are now looking at an 11.8 (percent) turnout rate," said Carol Ann Desiderio, assistant registrar of voters for the Malden City Clerk's Office.
The polls close at 8 p.m.
While the Malden City Clerk's Office is hoping voters will make a last-minute dash to the polls, the voter turnout has been low so far for the 5th Congressional primaries on Tuesday.
"It's was pretty slow at that point," said Carol Ann Desiderio, assistant registrar of voters for the City Clerk's Office, referring to the 5.6 percent of voters that cast their ballots by 1 p.m. There are 29,137 registered voters in Malden, she added. "We're hoping for that afterwork bump that people will kind of come out on their way home from work and hopefully we'll finish with maybe 20 percent voter turnout by the end of the day, but I'm not so sure."
Seven Democrats and three Republicans are seeking U.S. Sen. Ed Markey’s former 5th Congressional seat, and one candidate from each party will move one step closer toward that goal after the primaries.
In April, the city held a Special Election primary to see who would advance in their bid to fill the void left by John Kerry as a U.S. Senator after he accepted the position as the Secretary of State for the Obama Administration. Twenty-eight percent of registered voters in Malden participated in the Special Election primary, according to Desiderio.
"I'm not sure we're going to reach 28 percent today, and the only thing that I can contribute that to is people were voting for their hometown boy and a lot of people wanted to come out and support Ed Markey," she said. "I don't know, but maybe that's why there was a higher turnout than what we are seeing right now."
Markey, a Malden native, was elected to the Senate, beating Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez in June.
Here is information related to the candidates and voting:
The Democrats (with links to their campaign sites):
Polling Hours and Locations
Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
[Editor's note: Editor John Waller contributed to this report.]