It was a long day for my yesterday, with it starting at 4:40am when one of the feline contingent here at The Gulch decided it was time for me to wake up. Not that I needed to be up that early even though I had to be at the polls at 6:30am to prepare for opening the polls at 7am.
Right from the beginning voting was heavy. We saw the usual three rounds of high numbers of voters waiting in line to vote, the first being when the polls opened until about 8:30am, the second starting around 10:30am until a little past noon, and the last starting at 3:30pm until 5:30pm. It tapered off after 5:30 but was still busy with a steady stream right up to closing at 7pm.
We made accommodations for those voters who couldn’t or wouldn’t wear a mask, setting aside a separate line for them. Fortunately we had only a few voters that fell into that category, but we were prepared to handle hundreds if the need arose.
We saw around 5300 ballots cast, with 2000 of them being absentee ballots, an all time record. We’ve never seen so many absentee ballots, even as a percentage of all votes cast.
Another record set – 330 new voters registered to vote, with a line that continued right up to the polls closing. (Those in line when the polls closed were allowed to register and vote, meaning we couldn’t close the ballot boxes and start tallying until a little past 8pm.)
One not-so-surprising thing were the number of crossover votes we saw in our town, where a large percentage of Democrats voted for the Republican incumbent governor. This was something that also occurred across the state as the incumbent crushed his Democrat challenger by an almost 2-to-1 margin. (This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a lot of crossover voting. I can remember when a previous Democrat governor – John Lynch - was re-elected by a wide margin with a lot of Republican cross-over votes because he had done a good job. He was popular, particularly after he stood up to the legislature when they tried to raid the state highway fund to pay for things he felt were unneeded, and more importantly, unconstitutional.)
I haven’t been paying any attention to the Presidential race because, quite frankly, I didn’t want to hear the continual babble from the talking heads which would have “harshed my mellow”. Trump did win in our town by a pretty good margin, but then our town is a heavily Republican town in a heavily Republican county. All I’ve herd is that a number of swing states are too close to call.
I’ll find out soon enough as it is.