Turnout for primary election light this year
COLUMBUS, Ohio —
Turnout has been light during Tuesday's primary election, but there are new names on the ballot. Those names are part of a wave of candidates looking to shake up the status quo.
"You will have candidates who will say, 'this is my opportunity to test the waters,'" said Jonathan Kreger, a political science professor at Columbus State Community College. "These early elections, especially in primaries, is a way to kind of take a gut check of the mood of the voters. What are they thinking?"
Kreger said Democrats have started reorganizing their party after sweeping losses in 2016.
"A lot of time the opposition party will be more unified and motivated in these types of elections because of it," he said. "They kind of have a common person or party to focus on that they're against and it does bring out more people."
There are few races on the ballot in the City of Columbus, but ten candidates vying for only three seats on Columbus City Council.
Will Petrik is one of the newer names on the ballot. He is part of a progressive slate of candidates running on the "Yes We Can" ticket. He said part of the reason he's running for City Council is President Donald Trump's win last year.
"People hear about and are learning about and talking about Trump and everything that's going on at the national level, but I think we have the biggest ability to impact change and use our voice at the national level," Petrik said. "I was fired up. I know as I've been talking to people today, a lot of are really frustrated."
He is trying to outflank the current Democratic Party establishment in City Hall from the left by pushing for a $15 minimum wage, affordable child care, paid family and sick leave and universal pre-K schooling.
"My hope is that we continue to get more and more people engaged and more and more people energized to turn out and vote," Petrik said.
The top six vote-getters during the primary election will go on to compete for the three open seats on City Council. Voters will decide who is elected during the general election this fall.
To check on the results, click here.