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Trump Wins in Kentucky; GOP Turnout Triples in Calloway County

John Null/WKMS

As Kentucky voters gave Donald Trump a narrow victory in Saturday’s Republican presidential caucus, turnout in some counties was up three-fold from recent presidential primaries.

Calloway County GOP chair Greg DeLancey says some voters showed up at the Weaks Center in Murray hours before the 10 a.m. start time. Around 100 people were lined up when voting began.

“We had people showing up in the 8, 9 o’clock hour wanting to vote," DeLancey said. "Of course we told them they couldn’t. I think there’s just general interest."

Credit John Null/WKMS
The line to caucus at the Weaks Center in Murray

In Calloway County, the number of registered Republicans has jumped by more than 2,000 since 2012. That year, only 534 of 7,032 registered Republicans voted - a 7.6 percent turnout at a time when Mitt Romney had wrapped up his party's nomination. This time around, with the Republican nomination still up in the air, 1,602 of 9,122 registered Republicans caucused in Calloway County - a 10 percent increase in turnout.

Though he lost statewide, Texas Senator Ted Cruz performed well in the Jackson Purchase. He won Calloway, McCracken, Graves, Ballard and Marshall counties, while Trump claimed victory in Fulton. Trump also won Hopkins County by 12 votes.

To see a breakdown of how each Kentucky county voted, click here.

Kentucky Republicans switched to the caucus system this year so Sen. Rand Paul could run for both president and a second term in Washington. Paul dropped out of the race last month.

The Kentucky Democratic primary will take place May 17.

John Null is the host and creator of Left of the Dial. From 2013-2016, he also served as a reporter in the WKMS newsroom.
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