Trump stacks primary victories as GOP campaigns are suspended; voting information in Ellis County


Tiger Media Network

Former President Donald Trump secured victories in the Iowa Caucus and the New Hampshire Primary earlier this month, prompting GOP candidates to withdraw.

Trump concluded with 51% of the vote in Iowa under harsh weather conditions, with 99% of the ballots tallied.

According to the Associated Press, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis secured just over 21%, while former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley finished at 19% on January 15.

Biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy finished in 4th place, followed by an announcement to suspend his campaign. Ramaswamy decided to withdraw after assessing that there was no viable path for him in the race and endorsed Trump.

Ramaswamy said he would be open to serving as vice president under Trump.

“I’m not somebody who’s going to be able to speak anyone’s convictions but my own,” he said. “So if that’s a role that I can perform from the vice presidency or any other one, I’m going to evaluate whatever is best for the future of this country.”

Trump secured a victory in the New Hampshire primary last Tuesday after DeSantis suspended his campaign the weekend before, leaving Haley as Trump’s lone opponent in the race.

Despite finishing second place, Haley pledged to continue her campaign after the results were announced.

“This race is far from over. There are dozens of states left to go,” Haley said.

Fort Hays State University Associate Professor in Political Science Christopher Olds said Trump’s performance in Iowa is a clear message, positioning him as the contender against Biden.

“The victory sends a clear signal that many Republican voters nationwide feel former President Trump should be the candidate in the general election competing against the likely Democratic candidate, incumbent President Biden,” he said.

With Haley standing as Trump’s sole opponent, Olds said that exit polling in New Hampshire did not reveal substantial levels of support for her.

“Her prospects of earning the Republican nomination are slim to none,” he said.

The Republican Kansas Primary is scheduled for March 19, following Super Tuesday on March 5, where a significant portion of GOP delegates will be determined as multiple U.S. states hold primary elections and caucuses.

Olds said Kansas might not wield significant influence, depending on the number of delegates Trump secures.

“It’s possible for Trump to have the required 1,215 delegates before the Kansas primary,” he said. “In other words, the potential impact Kansas voters will have on the nomination outcome is not particularly high.”

Ellis County Clerk and Election Officer Bobbi Dreiling offers residents guidance on how to prepare themselves for the upcoming election.

“If Ellis County residents want to vote, they need to make sure they are registered to vote,” she said.

Ellis residents can call the County Clerk’s office at 785-628-9410 to verify that they are registered in Ellis County or stop by the Administrative Center, 718 Main St., and register in person or online.

“After you have registered to vote, you’ll get sent a confirmation card via mail with information including your polling location and what you are eligible to vote for, such as Commission District and Kansas Representative District,” Dreiling said.

In addition to voter registration, a valid photo ID is required for in-person voting. Acceptable forms of ID include:

  • Driver’s license or ID card issued by Kansas or another state
  • U.S. Passport
  • U.S. Military ID
  • ID card issued by a Native American tribe
  • Employee badge or ID issued by a government office
  • Student ID card from an accredited postsecondary education institution in Kansas
  • Concealed carry license issued by Kansas or another state
  • Public assistance ID card issued by a government office

Exemptions from photo ID requirements include permanent advance voters (those with illnesses or disabilities), military and overseas voters with their spouses and dependents and voters with religious objections who sign a Declaration of Religious Objection. Voters aged 65 or older can use an expired photo ID.

Residents can request a mail ballot by contacting Dreiling, stopping by the Administrative Center, or requesting one online.

Key dates Dreiling said Ellis Residents should know about are:

  • October 15 – Books close to voter registration at 5:00 pm. All registrations that are received at the county clerk’s office after this date will be processed as long as they are dated on or before October 15th
  • October 16 – First day to mail out advance mail ballots
  • October 21 – Early voting at the Administrative Center begins Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 
  • October 26 – Saturday voting from 8:00 a.m. to noon
  • October 29 – Last day to request an advance mail ballot
  • November 4 – Early voting closes at noon
  • November 5 (Election Day) – Poll site voting from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

More information on voting in Ellis County can be found on the Ellis County official website.

Trump secured approximately 70% of the vote in Ellis County in 2020, and this year seems to be no different, Olds said.

“We should expect a similarly strong performance in the 2024 election,” he said.

Olds said that the Democratic Party needs to develop a compelling message for why Biden should have a second term, as previous strategies may not be as effective.

“The ‘vote for Joe Biden because he’s not Donald Trump’ messaging worked in 2020 due to pandemic fears and social tensions following the murder of George Floyd during a police arrest,” he said. “Using the same rhetorical playbook when Joe Biden is the incumbent candidate doesn’t make a compelling case that President Biden has had meaningful policy achievements that warrant reelection.”

Olds acknowledges that several factors, including the stock market, GDP and unemployment figures, may influence voters’ decisions in the election.

Despite polling, Olds said the Biden Administration seems to be leaning towards a negative campaign against Trump as its primary plan. 

“It looks like the current strategy is to run a highly negative campaign in hopes that the messaging will depress turnout in support for Mr. Trump, but that doesn’t address boosting turnout for President Biden given his sagging poll numbers,” he said.

More information on how primaries and caucuses assist states and political parties in selecting presidential nominees can be found here.