More than 700,000 votes expected in Alabama

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – More than 700,000 Alabamians voters are expected at the polls Tuesday for the first election where voters are required to show a photo ID.

Voters will pick a ballot for either the Republican primary or the Democratic primary. The governor’s race is the only statewide contest on the Democratic ballot. The Republican ballot features several statewide races, with the hottest ones toward the middle of the ballot.

VOTING HOURS: Alabama’s polling places will be open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.

VOTER ID: Alabama’s new photo ID law will be used for the first time. The acceptable types of photo IDs are a driver’s license, non-driver ID, Alabama photo voter ID issued by the secretary of state or county board of registrars, an ID issued by any state, a federally issued ID, a passport, an employee ID from a government agency in Alabama, a student or employee ID from a public or private college in Alabama, a military ID or a tribal ID. A person without an ID may vote if two election officials identity the person as an eligible voter and sign a sworn affidavit.

TURNOUT: Alabama’s chief election official, Secretary of State Jim Bennett, is estimating that 25 percent to 27 percent of Alabama’s 2.85 million voters will turn out. That is down from 32 percent four years ago, when Alabama had hotly contested races for governor in both party primaries.

GOVERNOR: Incumbent Republican Robert Bentley faces former Morgan County Commissioner Stacy George and retired Scottsboro businessman Bob Starkey. Bentley has picked up a long list of endorsements and has raised more than $1,000 in campaign donations for each $1 collected by his opponents. On the Democratic ballot, former U.S. Rep. Parker Griffith of Huntsville squares off against former minor league baseball player Kevin Bass. Griffith has the endorsement of the Democratic Party’s black wing, the Alabama Democratic Conference, which often ensures victory in a primary. The governor’s race is the only statewide office being contested on the Democratic ballot.

OPEN SEATS: Two of the hottest races on the Republican ballot are for secretary of state and state auditor, where there are no incumbents running. Three candidates are seeking secretary of state and four are running for auditor.

CONGRESS: The hottest congressional race is in the 6th District in the Birmingham area, where Republican Spencer Bachus is retiring. Seven Republicans are vying for the nomination. Republican incumbents Mike Rogers of Anniston and Mo Brooks of Huntsville and Democratic incumbent Terri Sewell of Birmingham face poorly funded opponents.

LEGISLATURE: Some of the hottest races are for the Legislature, with the Alabama Education Association and Stop Common Core political action committee trying to knock off several Republican incumbents. The two leaders of the Republican takeover of the Legislature in the 2010 election, House Speaker Mike Hubbard of Auburn and Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh of Anniston, face opposition. This is the first election using House and Senate districts designed by the Legislature’s Republican majority. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear a legal challenge to those districts, but that won’t affect Tuesday’s election.

UP NEXT: Any primary races requiring a runoff will be decided July 15.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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