Voters turn out to honor John Lewis by voting early in special election to fill his seat

Voters turn out to honor John Lewis by voting early in special election to fill his seat

ATLANTA — Early voting is now underway to see who will finish out Rep. John Lewis' term.

Lewis represented Georgia’s 5th District from more than 30 years. The district includes parts of Fulton, DeKalb and Clayton counties.

Channel 2′s Steve Gehlbach spoke with voters on Tuesday who said they were carrying on Lewis' legacy.

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“All elections matter. Don’t care what it is, they matter to me,” voter Bennie Louder said.

But this election does carry extra meaning following Lewis' death.

“I can’t even touch all he went through so that we’d be able to vote. So as long as I’m on this side of the dirt I’m going to vote,” voter Helen Showers said.

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“I feel I have to vote in every election because if I don’t vote, I don’t say anything. When I vote I have a right to complain,” Louder said.

Seven candidates have thrown their hat in for the seat. They include five Democrats, an Independent and a libertarian.

The winner needs 50% of the vote or there will be a runoff between the top two candidates in early December.

That means the eventual congressperson will likely only hold office for less than two months before the next swearing in January. And that’s where things get a little confusing, because at the same time, there’s another vote on Nov. 3 to decide who takes the Congressional seat permanently for the next two-year term.

Democrats have selected state Sen. Nikema Williams to take Lewis' spot in that election. She is set to face Republican candidate Angela Stanton King in that race.

But many felt, even if temporary, they want to exercise their right to vote that Lewis fought so hard for.

“I think it’s really important we carry on his legacy and that we continue to have politicians in line with the people,” voter DeDe Gully said.

The day for the special election is Sept. 29.

The world says goodbye to Civil Rights hero Rep. John Lewis