BOSTON (AP) — Secretary of State William Galvin says Massachusetts officials are preparing for the state’s first Thursday primary in more than 20 years.

Galvin said on Saturday that turnout is expected to be less than 15 percent. He says turnout could exceed the statewide expectations in areas where there are several contests, including western Massachusetts.

The vote will let Massachusetts residents pick winners in a slew of key Beacon Hill and congressional primaries, setting the stage for a dash to the November general election.

Last primary to be held Thursday in Massachusetts was in 1988. That year, it was because of when Rosh Hashana fell. This year, the primary is on Thursday for the same reason as well as the fact that the state requires ballots be available 45 days ahead of the election.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.


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