Delaware voters head to the polls

    Hot races in the Delaware Republican primary for the U.S. Senate and U.S. House put the state in the national spotlight.

    Vice President Joe Biden went to a place this morning where everyone just calls him “Joe”.  The Vice President went to the Tatnall School in Greenville to vote in the Delaware primary.  Today is primary election day in Delaware.  Only contested races in both the Democratic and Republican parties are on the ballot.  That means Mr. Biden could not cast a vote for his son, Attorney General Beau Biden.  He is running unopposed.

    A year ago there was a lot more attention given to the General Election race for U.S. Senate.  It was billed as a potential match-up between Attorney General Biden and long time Delaware U.S. Congressman Mike Castle.  In late December, Biden decided against running.  That sent the Democrats scrambling for a candidate. Now, New Castle County Executive Chris Coons is running unopposed in today’s primary.

    The excitement in the race picked up over the summer when Republican challenger Christine O’Donnell started garnering endorsements from the Tea Party Express movement.   In recent weeks, the race has captured national attention.  The Delaware GOP has kept up a barrage of emails and other literature trying to discredit O’Donnell’s campaign.  O’Donnell has had to down play charges about her personal finances as she casts herself as the best choice for conservative Republicans.

    The other high profile race in Delaware is for Castle’s soon to be vacant House seat.  Michele Rollins, Glen Urquhart and Rose Izzo are the Republicans vying for the seat.  Urquhart has cast himself as the Tea Party favorite and the more conservative candidate.  Rollins, too, says she is conservative and was driven by the health care reform vote to get into the race for Congress.

    Voter turn out in Sussex County is reported as high as 30%  in some parts of the county.  In New Castle County voter officials report turn out at about 25%.  There were some minor issues this morning, but all polling places reported opening on time.

    As for the Vice-President since he couldn’t cast a Democratic ballot to decide who would fill the remainder of his term as U.S. Senator from Delaware, he had to pick from contested races for New Castle County sheriff and state treasurer.  Former Biden aide, Ted Kaufman, now holds the senate seat.  He will serve until November.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.