OTTAWA - Touch screen voting machines on loan to the county will go back to Franklin County after next week's election.

County election officials are already trying to line up new machines to replace them.

Options include either continuing with such touch screen machines or the optical scan system in use in other areas.

"We're in the process of examining the optical system over in Allen County," said Ginger Price, director of the Putnam County Board of Elections.

As of yet, no decision about a replacement has been made, though a decision is expected within the next 10 days. Meanwhile, officials are gearing up for the Dec. 11 election. The deadline for applying for absentee ballots by mail is Saturday, Dec. 8. The board of elections is adding special hours that day from 8 a.m.-noon.

The board of elections confirmed Tuesday that the Dec. 11 election will be the last one county officials are expecting they will be able to use voting machines borrowed from Franklin County.

During the candidates' swings through the area, both pressed supporters to keep up the fight.

"The last 10 days, let's just keep at it," said Weirauch in Tiffin on Saturday. "We clearly have a chance here."

Video of Weirauch's speech was made available by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Latta likewise urged supporters on.

It's the final stretch for candidates, and Latta addressed the difficulties of a short campaign.

"Make sure you tell your friends and neighbors they have to be voting election day," said Latta.

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