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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    PARADISE (San Diego)

    CA. Voters start tackling mega-ballot Monday

    Voters start tackling mega-ballot Monday

    Joshua Stewart

    By any measure, this election will be supersized.

    The ballot, filled with candidates and propositions and measures, spans two cards printed on the front and back, and would stretch six feet if it were laid end to end.

    The county Registrar of Voters will have so many people working for it on Election Day that it will, briefly, be one of the ten-biggest employers in the county. The number of registered voters is expected to reach historic levels as people are still have two weeks to sign up to vote.

    Election Day is a month away, but early voting begins Monday at the registrar’s office with mail ballots being sent to voters starting Tuesday. For San Diego County, it’s the opening of what’s likely to be the largest general election in its history.

    Between Monday and when polling places close at 8 p.m. on Nov. 8, voters will choose the first new president in eight years, as well as a slew of candidates for Congress, Legislature, school boards and other local offices. They’ll determine the fate of scores of statewide and local ballot measures that might enact a new countywide sales tax, legalize recreational marijuana, finance a football stadium, end the death penalty, and require porn actors to wear condoms.

    San Diego puts a wave of measures on November's ballot. »

    Besides the scope of what’s on the ballot, the sheer numbers of this election, from the size of the electorate to the number of rental trucks used to ferry supplies to and from polling places, creates an exercise in democracy and logistics on a scale that the county and registrar of voters has never seen before.

    Nearly everything about the general election will be bigger, meaning longer lines at the polls and likely delayed final results. Those voting on Election Day have been urged to do their homework so they can get in and out of the polling places as quickly as possible.

    “Every presidential election in itself is a herculean task,” county Registrar of Voters Michael Vu said. “What makes it even more herculean is that we have some unprecedented situations that we not only have to overcome, but take a methodological approach on.”

    On Election Day the registrar’s office be one of the county’s top-ten biggest employers, with some 9,300 people working for the department — slightly more than Kaiser Permanente.

    The county isn’t predicting turnout for 2016, but in 2012 a total of 77 percent of registered voters participated, well more than the other five most-populous counties in California.

    Even though it’s unknown how many people will cast a ballot this time around, officials are encouraging voters to plan ahead and and to strongly consider voting by mail.

    “We know that mail-ballot voters turn in their ballots at a higher propensity,” Vu said. “There is a convenience factor.”

    He suggested voters have a responsibility to help make things work smoothly.

    “There’s a level of common courtesy knowing the election we have on November 8,” he said.

    Voter registration climbs across the country for presidential elections, but this year is almost certain to break records in San Diego County. Sixty days before the election 1,526,678 people were signed up to vote, state records show.

    Historically, another 100,000 people register in the weeks before election. The number of registered voters is likely to top the 1,563,093 in 2012, maybe by a lot.

    October 24 is the deadline to register. People can register online at, or through forms available at the registrar’s office, post office, libraries, city clerk offices and other locations. People can also use that website to check their registration status, the location of their polling place and drop-off spots to hand-deliver mail ballots.

    Additionally, Vu said he expects more than 1 million mail-in ballots for the first time ever. Currently just over 965,000 people are signed up to vote this way, but people can submit their physical request to the registrar until 5 p.m. on Nov. 1. He urged voters to hand-deliver mail ballots that aren’t put in the postal service by Nov. 1 to ensure they will be tallied on Election Day.

    The registrar’s office at the County Operations Center, 5600 Overland Ave in Kerny Mesa, will begin accepting hand-delivered ballots this week. Starting October 31 voters can give mail-in ballots to any of 25 various locations around the county.

    People can also start voting Monday at the registrar’s office on weekdays as well as the weekend before the election, Nov. 5-7. The registrar’s office can be reached at and (85 565-5800.

    Whether a person votes by mail or in person, they will receive official election material in the coming weeks. The last of more than 1.5 million hefty Sample Ballots and Voter Information pamphlets were scheduled to be in the mail this past Saturday.

    The pamphlet includes every race and proposition an individual voter can participate in. Vu said voters not only should only study it, but those planning to vote in person should mark it up and take it to their polling places.

    “Don’t let it sit there on the table,” Vu said. “Open it up, look at the two-card ballot and start to study, and don’t try to wait or procrastinate all the way to Election Day, or even a week before Election Day.”

    County's two-card ballot means long wait for election returns. »

    For the first time the ballot is printed on two cards, front and back, due to the contests for elected office as well as the 17 state and 35 local propositions and measures. If each page of the ballot is laid end to end it will stretch six feet long.

    The county had to re-engineer some of its collection boxes to fit the extra-long ballots, and it will use 90 rather than the usual 60 trucks it uses to help with the logistics of transporting election-day equipment, supplies and ballots.

    People who vote by mail might be able to avoid waits at precincts, but because of the double-card ballot, everyone will have to wait for results since it will take longer to count double-ballots cast at precincts.

    Totals from vote-by-mail ballots will be released shortly after precincts close at 8 p.m.

    Twitter: @jptstewart
    (619) 293-1841


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  2. #2
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    PARADISE (San Diego)
    AM Alert: It's not Election Day yet, but Californians can start voting

    The November election is officially on in California.

    With 29 days to go until Election Day – that's Nov. 8, for those of you keeping track of when you may have to flee the country because Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton is elected our next president – voters will begin receiving mail-in ballots today and can now vote early at their county elections offices.

    There are a record number of Californians registered the vote this year: 18.25 million. And the total is almost certain to rise before the registration deadline on Oct. 24.

    Don't reward the criminal actions of millions of illegal aliens by giving them citizenship.

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