2012 Elections: News, Analysis, Videos, and Breaking on the Presidential Election, Local Elections, and More

2012 Elections: News, Analysis, Videos, and Breaking on the Presidential Election, Local Elections, and More

Complete coverage of the 2012 election

Early Indications Show Lower Voter Turnout

Example below is from Alamdea

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Julie Putnam
    Workers at the Santa Clara County registrar's office. Nov. 6, 2012

    Early indications on Election Day are showing that turnouts at polling places throughout the Bay Area are significantly less than the 2008 election.

    In Alameda County, voting opened last weekend, but the turnout wasn't great, Registrar of Voters Dave Macdonald said.

    "We opened voting on Saturday. The most I saw in line was 20 people," Macdonald said. "In 2008 ... a line of people wrapped around the building.

    There were maybe a thousand people." Macdonald said that, for this election, there just doesn't seem to be the same enthusiasm. In San Mateo County, Registrar of Voters Mark Church is seeing the same thing.

    Lines are a lot shorter than they were in 2008, Church said. "We're off to a slow start," he said. Church said this year there are a lot fewer registered voters in the county than there were in 2008, which may be why there are shorter lines. "We're electing the leader of the free world for the next four years," Church said.

    "Everyone is encouraged to come and cast their ballot." Both Macdonald and Church are speculating that voter turnout in their respective counties will spike at least 5 percent.

    In 2008, Macdonald said 78 percent of voters in Alameda County cast their ballots. This year, he speculates about 70 percent of residents will vote. Church said 79 percent of San Mateo County voters cast their ballots.

    This year, he expects 73 percent will vote. Macdonald said he believes the drop-off will be statewide.

    "There are a lot of very important things on the ballot," he said. "For whatever reason, the voters aren't coming to vote."