City government

With turnout ‘anemic,’ election runs smoothly

By From page A8 | June 06, 2012

WOODLAND — The Yolo County Elections Office put on another big show on Tuesday, with 500 staff and volunteer workers, but a crowd failed to materialize.

About 40 percent of the county’s 96,961 voters looked to have cast a ballot.

“It’s what I would call ‘anemic,’ ” said County Clerk/Recorder Freddie Oakley. “It’s a cause for regret every time (turnout is that low).”

She estimated the election cost about $400,000.

More than 28,000 votes were cast by mail. At least 10,633 were cast at polling places. Those numbers continue a trend toward voting by mail.

“I love polling places,” Oakley said. “I like the flag waving. It creates educational moments for our children. But I have a feeling the days of the polling place are numbered.”

Voting ran smoothly, she said. Results were out by 1 a.m.

One new sight at the primary: About eight Occupy protesters turned up outside Davis Community Church, decrying the role of money in politics.

“It was all peace and love,” said Oakley, who joined them for a time. “I agreed with what they had to say. I find (the Supreme Court’s) Citizens United (ruling against limits on corporate and union independent election spending) deeply disturbing.”

The Elections Office has 28 days to finalize its numbers. As of early Wednesday, there were 975 provisional votes to process and 4,836 absentee votes that arrived Tuesday to be counted.

Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter. http://about.me/cory_golden
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