MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Democratic presidential candidates have their eyes on the Mid-South. After Saturday's South Carolina primary, the focus will turn to Super Tuesday on March 3rd. Both Tennessee and Arkansas voters will head to the polls then.
Tennessee and Arkansas are two of fourteen states that will hold presidential preference primaries on Tuesday.
Early voting in Shelby County ended Tuesday, and numbers are slightly up compared to this time four years ago.
"We are getting more calls from national publications for comments," said Linda Phillips, Shelby County Administrator of Elections, "We're not dealing with voters, but it is still a busy, busy time for us."
Super Tuesday six days away means there's lots of work to be done at the Shelby County Election Commission to wrap up early voting and get all materials ready for Election Day.
Phillips said in a presidential preference primary, some voters hold out for Election Day to consider any new developments in the campaigns.
"Typically, you do see more people voting on Election Day, because the landscape is changing every day," said Phillips.
Preliminary turnout numbers from 2020's early vote in Shelby County show 43,698 ballots have been cast. Phillips cautioned the numbers provided Wednesday do not yet include mail-in ballots, which are still being processed. The early vote in 2016's presidential preference primary netted 43,542 ballots cast.
Super Tuesday is expected to significantly narrow the Democratic field of presidential candidates aiming to take on President Donald Trump in November.
Tom Steyer, Bernie Sanders, Amy Klobuchar, Mike Bloomberg, and a political action committee featuring Elizabeth Warren all have television ads airing in the Memphis market.
Joe Biden's campaign announced Wednesday afternoon they were launching a new Super Tuesday ad. The ad will be running in the Memphis market.
Bloomberg unveiled his healthcare platform in December in Memphis and will speak Friday morning at an event at Minglewood Hall. Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland is a national co-chair of Bloomberg's campaign.
Wednesday afternoon actress Ashley Judd came to Memphis to stump for Elizabeth Warren. Judd will also campaign for Warren in Nashville the night before Super Tuesday.
"It's up to each of us to do our part on behalf of Elizabeth Warren," said Judd, "She has got the guts to stand up to anybody and say to them you are not qualified. You are corrupt. You should be fired. You are a moral stain. You need to stand down. You need to go home."
Phillips said you may notice some candidates on both the Democratic and Republican ballot who have suspended their campaigns, dropping out of the race. The names remain on the ballot because the state requires the ballot to be finalized in December.
Phillips said you should not worry that there is an error on your ballot if you see a dropped-out candidate listed on it.