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Early voting down

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By Damon Lawrence

One of the perks for a hometown politician is being able to tell stories a local crowd can relate to. Dennis Ferguson, a Democrat from Midtown, used that to his advantage during a forum at Luminary United Methodist Church in September.
“Unfortunately I don’t have 18 years worth of stories to tell you,” Lenoir City Republican Julia Hurley said.
Ferguson and Hurley are vying for the 32nd District seat in the State House of Representatives. Ferguson, the incumbent, hasn’t been shy about using the hometown card during the campaign. At the  Luminary forum he told stories about his Boy Scout master and his Boy Scout master’s daughter who were in the crowd. 
“I’m a Roane County boy,” Ferguson said last week. “I’ve grown up with the people here. I went to school with their kids. I’ve paved their driveways. That’s the reason I can relate to the people, because I’ve done things with them.”
Ferguson will find out Tuesday night whether the hometown advantage worked in his favor this election. The polls open at 8 a.m. and close at 8 p.m.
Roane County Administrator of Elections Charles Holiway said his office should start releasing results shortly after the polls close.   
According to the Tennessee Department of State, early and absentee voting in Roane County totaled 8,219. Holiway said that was less than the 2006 total (9,430), but he was still pleased with the turnout.
“I thought Roane County did a very good job during early voting,” he said.
Holiway also pointed out that the 2006 election featured a contentious U.S. Senate race between Bob Corker and Harold Ford Jr.