Voters Head to Polls Today to Settle Primary Elections

MAY 23, 2006 - Posted at 7:28 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - It's voting day.  Arkansans go to polling places today to select party nominees for positions that will be filled in the November general election.  Candidates in heated races for lieutenant governor and attorney general headline contests that will be decided today.

Four Democrats and three Republicans are seeking their party's nomination for lieutenant governor, including Paragould Democrat and state Senator Tim Wooldridge.  State Representative Dustin McDaniel of Jonesboro is among three Democrats seeking their party's state attorney general nomination.

In this year's gubernatorial race, neither Democrat Mike Beebe nor Republican Asa Hutchinson faces a primary challenger.

Election officials say voters in four Arkansas counties won't be using federally mandated electronic voting equipment when they cast ballots in today's party primaries.

The secretary of state's office said yesterday that Desha, Jefferson, Sebastian and Stone counties won't use the touch-screen voting machines.  The machines are required under a federal law mandating that each polling site have at least one machine accessible to the disabled.

Stone County election commissioners decided yesterday to rely only on paper ballots because not all of the software needed for the electronic machines arrived.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)