Elections officials say so far, so good at the polls Tuesday, as Election Day 2020 has launched smoothly in the Bay Area’s nine counties.
By 11 a.m., counties reported few lines and no real problems at polling places.
Scott Konopasek, the assistant registrar of voters in Contra Costa County, said:
“(It’s been) a steady stream of voters. Only 10,000 voted so far.”
Konopasek’s county received more than 420,000 early ballots, as of Monday.
Turnout for in-person voting is down, thanks to the massive push for early and mail-in voting due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The night before Election Day, more than 2.7 million Bay Area voters had already cast ballots.
Statewide, in excess of 11.2 million of California’s more than 21 million registered voters already voted. Nationwide, the number was approaching 100 million by Monday evening — almost 70% of the 136.5 million people who voted in 2016.
John Gardener, Solano County’s assistant registrar of voters, said:
“We are smooth sailing at this point.”
Solano County reported receiving 119,986 ballots by the end of the day Oct. 30.
“Turnout at polls is fairly steady and no report of lines yet. Voters should know that there are 100 locations in the county where voters can return ballots today. All locations are open until 8 p.m.”
That is when polls close statewide. California polls officially opened at 7 a.m. for in-person voting. The state sent mail-in ballots to all its registered voters at least 29 days before the Nov. 3 election.
Officials say voters responded to calls for early voting amid speculation it could take days or even weeks beyond Election Day to finalize results for some races.
Lynda Roberts, the registrar of voters in Marin County, said:
“It’s going smoothly here. Including the early voting days, which started Saturday, more than 6,400 people have voted at our polling places.”
Marin County reported more than 130,000 of its 175,220 registered voters sent in ballots by Nov. 2.
“Voters need to remember to sign their ballot envelope, so processing isn’t delayed. If voters are nailing their ballots back to the elections department, it must be postmarked today.”
Alameda County reported Monday about 581,445 people cast votes before Election Day, which is 60.2% of its registered voters.
Alameda County Registrar Tim Dupuis said:
“Things are going well. A little more in-person voting than we saw over the weekend. It still looks like the majority of the votes are being dropped off as vote by mail.”
Sonoma County processed more than 203,000 ballots by Nov. 2, which accounts for 67 percent of its registered voters.
Sonoma County registrar Deva Marie Proto said there’s been no problems in her county.
“It looks like we’ve already issued about 2,600 in-person ballots.”
Ballots can still be returned in person at a polling place or the county elections office; or to a designated drop box, the locations of which are specified by each county elections office.
Ballots already mailed must be postmarked by Election Day, and they must be received by the county elections office no later than 17 days after Election Day.
Once sent, ballots can be tracked at https://california.ballottrax.net/voter/.
Anyone who is unsure about their eligibility can go to https://www.sos.ca.gov/elections/voting-resources/voting-california/who-can-vote-california . Voters can still register for most elections by visiting their county elections office, a vote center or their polling place.
Californians can find answers to most voting questions at https://localnewsmatters.org/voter-information-hub/ .
The voting process varies from county to county. Those needing to contact their county elections office, but aren’t sure how can find the information here.
To keep up with the latest developments and for answers to many election questions, use this website’s Voter Information Hub as a resource guide and contact us if you have feedback or questions.