Record Valley Voter Turnout Expected

October 9, 2008 7:29:12 PM PDT
South Valley elections offices are getting ready for Election Day. Tulare County expects record voter registration and Kings County is hoping for record voter turnout.One of the most popular places to register to vote is at the Department of Motor Vehicles, but election workers say the DMV, Post Office and other places are running out of voter registration cards. While more people may be registering to vote, fewer people are actually picking a political party.

Sabrina Gomez and Dewayne Stewart decided now is the right time to register to vote. Sabrina Gomez says "I just think it's important for us to be able to have a say about what goes on in our lives and our counties."

Dewayne Stewart says "So far, we're already going through a lot of bad things already with the recession and everything else. I feel it's important to get the word out there and say something."

The Farmersville couple says more people than ever before think there's too much at stake to miss the upcoming election.

Sabrina Gomez says "We've been following the debates and I think it's out there a lot more now. More people are paying attention to what's going on."

Tulare county elections officials say they expect more people to register to vote than ever before. Every day they're processing around 300 new voter registration cards.

Tulare County Elections official Paul Sampietro says "The record is a little over 141,000 and we're right now at 140,000 so if we process our cards in the next few days we'll be well over the record."

Kings County Officials say they're registering well over one thousand voters a week, as well. Worker say, while many people are choosing the Republican or Democratic parties, a growing number of people are registering as "Decline to State." Election official Ken Baird says many of the new voters are young people, like his daughter.

Ken Baird, Kings County Elections, says "The things I'm finding is her and a lot of her friends are having a hard time having political affiliations so she and her friends tend to be more "decline to state."

Ken Baird says they're hoping for a 65% voter turnout rate, the highest ever, based on the amount of calls and people coming into the elections office. The last day to register to vote is October 20th.

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