By Tommy Mann Jr. – The Record

U.S. Presidential races for both the Republican and Democratic Parties are packing the polls, but local races have led to high early voting figures for 2016.

The Orange County Republican ballot is loaded with several races, including the race for Orange County Commissioners of Precinct 1 which has five candidates.

Current Commissioner David Dubose is not seeking re-election. Candidates on the ballot include Gary Hinote, Bobby Manshack, Ryan Peabody, Johnny Trahan and Shirley Zimmerman.

Incumbent John Banken will be opposed by challenger John Gothia for the Precinct 3 seat on Orange County Commissioners Court as well.

Orange County Sheriff Keith Merritt is seeking re-election as he faces opponent David Smith.

In the race for Orange County Constable in Precinct 2, incumbent Constable David Cagle will be opposed by Jeremiah Gunter, while the Orange County Constable race for Precinct 4 will have incumbent Weldon Peveto being contested by Jimmy Lane Mooney

In the race for Orange County Clerk, appointee Brandy Robertson will be opposed by new candidate, Trish Williams, and the race for Tax Assessor-Collector will feature candidates Debbie Meaux and Karen Fisher on the ballot.

Unopposed races on the Orange County Republican ballot will include Chris Humble, Precinct 1 Constable; Mark Philpott, Precinct 3 Constable; John Kimbrough, Orange County Attorney; Troy Johnson, Orange County 2nd Court at Law; Courtney Arkeen, Orange County 128th District Court; Dennis Powell, Orange County 163rd District Court; and Sheila Faske, Orange County Republican Chairperson.

The race for the Republican Party nomination for U.S. President is running full speed ahead, and Texas is up next. High profile candidates such as Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and Ben Carson continue to push ahead with all eyes on November.

Other races on the ballot include Railroad Commissioner and several seats on the Texas Supreme Court in Place 3, Place 5 and Place 9.

For the Orange County Democratic Party, there is only one contested race on the ballot and it will feature Deborah Mitchell, the incumbent Chairperson of the Orange County Democratic Party, who is being opposed by challenger Don Brown.

The race for the Democratic nomination for U.S. President is just as heated as Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders lead a pack of eight candidates looking to November.

The ballot also features three candidates seeking the party nomination for Railroad Commissioners, as well as Supreme Court Place 3, Place 5 and Place 9.

Election day is 7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 1. Locations will be available in a coming edition of The Record.