Voter turnout on Anna Maria Island was particularly heavy. especially in Holmes Beach where voting was up 68.6 percent from 2011, according to the Manatee County Supervisor of Elections website.
In the 2011 Holmes Beach election 2,649 votes were cast for city commissioners, while the figure jumped to 4,465 in 2012. Voters were able to cast a ballot for two of the four candidates.
First-time commission candidates Judy Titsworth and Marvin Grossman won seats with 1,628 and 1,1143 respectively. Incumbents Sandy Haas-Martens and John Monetti tallied 832 and 862 votes respectively.
Carmel Monti upset incumbent Mayor Rich Bohnenberger 1,318 to 1,103.
Countywide, 85,616 votes went to the Romney/Ryan Republican ticket while the Obama/Bieden Democrat candidates had 66,476.
There were no commission or mayor candidates in either Anna Maria or Holmes Beach.
Volunteer poll workers at both Gloria Dei Lutheran Church and St. Bernard Catholic Church polling stations in Holmes Beach said lines were long early in the morning.
“This was the biggest turnout I’ve ever seen,” said a poll worker at Gloria Dei of her 12th election.
The same sentiments were echoed by volunteers at St. Bernard Catholic Church, where poll workers were greeted by a line of people at 7 a.m., a poll volunteer reported.
“Never seen anything like this,” he said.
In Anna Maria, with no city elections on the ballot, the turnout was slow and steady all day for voters to cast ballots in county, state and federal offices.
A lot of people voted absentee or did early voting, one worker at the Roser Memorial Community Church polling station suggested.
“It’s been steady all day, but we never had a big rush,” she said.
Voters said they had no problems casting a ballot.
“Everything went smooth,” one voter said.
But voters were reluctant to reveal their choices. Of 24 voters surveyed, only three responded. One person said he voted democrat, another said he voted republican, while a third said he couldn’t remember.
The remainder of those polled said they would keep their votes a secret.