Will Pinellas voter turnout in 2014 surpass 2010 primary?

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Pinellas County is about 25,000 votes shy of total votes cast the last time there was a gubernatorial primary in Florida.

In 2010, about 147,000 ballots were counted. So far this election, more than 108,000 mail ballots were returned, 1,856 people took part in early voting and, as of noon, 12,050 people had voted at precincts on Election Day.

But, voter turnout may be on pace to exceed the 2010 primary. That year, only 86,000 people voted by mail while 58,000 voted on Election Day.

In both elections, candidates for governors faced primary challengers. However, in 2010, both the Democratic and Republican primaries were competitive since then Gov. Charlie Crist was not seeking re-election. This year, incumbent Rick Scott faces a challenger in the primary, but no one really knows about it. So does Crist. But both are considered shoo-ins for the general election.

The high profile gubernatorial races tend to drive voter turnout.

Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email janelle@floridapolitics.com.