Election Day Disappointment

December 22, 2008 2:10:40 PM PST
Fresno County Elections Officials Are Disappointed. What they believed would be a day of record voter turnout fell drastically short of expectations."Still have approx 30,000 absentee and provisional ballots to be processed so don't have finals numbers."

Expectations for voter turnout in Fresno County were high, between 60 and 65 percent.

But those expectations fell short.

Victor Salazar, Fresno County Registrar Of Voters: "I am disappointed. We were looking for a record turnout and still it's going to be a strong turnout but not as high as I had hoped for."

In Fresno County some confusion for independent voters, many say they didn't know they could vote for democratic presidential candidates. Some claim that poll workers never explained their options.

"We feel that four written communications."

"Plus a sign that is posted at every polling place is adequate notification."

Elections officials say about 100 thousand Fresno County residents voted absentee.

Many of those absentee ballots came in at the last minute. And instead of mailing the ballots thousands of voters personally turned them in.

"That was a result of the closeness of the races and many of the voters wanted to be sure their candidate did not drop out."

In June's primary the Republican Party is allowing independent voters to vote in their primary.

Even though they were declined-to-state many didn't know they could do. If they were lucky enough to have asked they were told they could do that, if they didn't ask they weren't allowed to vote or they just didn't know they could vote in it.

It seems to be unfair to those who were registered declined-to-state.

Staff were saying and responding to inquiries and also advising them of what their options were when voters requested or asked about that.


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