Turnout meager in rain-soaked first day of early voting - Houston weather, traffic, news | FOX 26 | MyFoxHouston

Turnout meager in rain-soaked first day of Senate race early voting

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

As lawmakers gather in the Texas Senate, more than 800,000 citizens who make their home on Houston's east side remain unrepresented.

The first ballots to fill the seat of the late Mario Gallegos were cast on this rainy Wednesday but not very many.

"Oh, about 15 or so people so far before noon," said a poll watcher outside the Baytown Community Center.

Inside the center, FOX 26 encountered more janitors than voters.  The election staff on this first day of early voting was clearly engaged in a battle against boredom.

Same deal at the Galena Park Library.  Voter Myrna Green was among the few who managed enough "want to" to make it through the rain.

"It's just so sad and it breaks my heart that so few people care about this election, but we need a senator that will stand up for us in the legislature," said Green.

Miles away at the Ripley House on Navigation in the heart of the Hispanic east side, turnout was extremely light.

There was little risk of wear and tear on the Harris County's election equipment.  By 2 p.m., barely 200 ballots had been cast at all seven polling places combined.

Oddsmakers rate this race a toss-up between veteran Democratic officeholders Sylvia Garcia and Carol Alvarado.

Spanish language television reporter Yolanda Reyes capsulized the District 6 electorate's lean to the left.

"We have the same values as Republicans, but we don't feel as a community like they support us," said Reyes.
 
Republican educator Dorothy Olmos is among the outlying candidates looking to pry her way into an expected run-off.
 
"The majority of the people here are Hispanic descent and they've been neglected too for long.  I can bring the things that I believe in: pro-life, family values, very conservative. That's what we are about," said Olmos, who recently failed in a bid to win a seat on the state board of education.

By 5 p.m., the Harris County Clerk's office reported 288 ballots were cast district wide.

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