VANCOUVER — Clark County Elections officials say a little more than half of the county’s eligible voters have already dropped off their ballots ahead of Election Day on Tue., Nov. 8.
“We’ve had a 50.69 percent turnout so far,” said Clark County Elections Director Cathie Garber. “It’s hard to know if everyone is waiting until tomorrow (Election Day).”
As of 2 p.m. today, Mon., Nov. 7, the county’s elections office had counted 138,252 returned ballots — just over 50 percent of the county’s 272,698 eligible voters.
Garber said county officials expect voter turnout for the 2016 General Election to be around 82 percent. That number would be on par with the 83 percent turnout in the 2008 presidential election and slightly more than the county’s 79 percent voter turnout in the 2012 presidential election.
Compared to other recent presidential elections, Clark County voters are voting a bit earlier than they did in 2012, when 43 percent of eligible voters turned in early ballots, but not as fast as they did in 2008, when 58 percent of the county’s eligible voters turned ballots in before Election Day.
In those previous elections, ballots counted on Election Day — including those that were sent by mail, ballots dropped off at the county’s elections office and those dropped into Election Day drop boxes — accounted for 38 percent of all Clark County ballots received in the 2012 General Election and 29 percent of those collected in the 2008 General Election.
Still haven’t voted? You’ve got one more day!
With media outlets throughout the Portland metro area announcing that it’s too late to mail ballots in Oregon, Garber said elections officials in Clark County believe local voters may have thought that applied to them, too.
“The media have been telling people to drop (ballots) in a drop site and that it’s too late to mail them,” Garber said. “But that is for Oregon and a lot of people hear that and think it’s the same for us.”
In Washington State, voters can still mail their ballots on Election Day.
“As long as they’re postmarked by 8 p.m. on (Tue., Nov. 8),” Garber says, Clark County voters’ ballots will be counted.
If you want your ballot to be counted on Election Day, however, your best best is to drop it at the Clark County Elections Office, 1408 Franklin St., Vancouver, between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. on Election Day, Tue., Nov. 8.
Another option is to drop your ballot in one of the five, drive-up ballot drop boxes available for 24 hours a day through Election Day:
- Battle Ground City Hall parking lot, 109 S.W. 1st St., Battle Ground
- Fisher’s Landing Transit Center, 3510 S.E. 164th Ave., Vancouver
- Downtown Vancouver, corner of West 14th Street and Esther Street, Vancouver
- Downtown Camas Post Office, 440 N.E. 5th Ave., Camas
- 99th Street Transit Center, 9700 N.E. 7th Ave., Vancouver
Finally, elections workers will be available to take your ballot by hand from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day, Tue., Nov. 8, at more than 30 different locations throughout Clark County, including many schools and community centers in rural areas.
Watch results or head out to party with other local voters on Election Night
Where can you get up-to-the-minute local and national results on Election Night? You have a few options. You can, of course, count on clarkcountytoday.com to bring you local results after they start coming in around 8 p.m., Tue., Nov. 8, and we’ll have reporters covering a few of the local Election Night parties, so you can find out what other Clark County voters are talking about as national, statewide and local results start to come in.
Other options include:
Clark/Vancouver Television (CVTV), local government Cable Channel 23, will provide the only live, local election night television coverage in Clark County starting at 8 p.m. Tue., Nov. 8.
Viewers can turn to Channel 23 for up-to-the-minute Clark County election results, analysis and commentary. Live CVTV election coverage also will be available to viewers online at www.cvtv.org.
Michael Wilson, senior associate for Westby Associates and former Vancouver City Councilmember, and Kelly Love, public relations and communications consultant for Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center, will conduct candidate interviews from Clark College’s Gaiser Hall.
Clark/Vancouver Television is the local government, non-commercial cable access channel operated and funded by the City of Vancouver and Clark County, Washington.
Election Night Parties
If you’re feeling social on Election Night and want to celebrate with other like-minded voters, why not head out to one of the Election Night parties happening in Clark County?
The Clark County Republicans will host a Victory Party starting at 6:30 p.m., Tue., Nov. 8, at Club Green Meadows, 7703 N.E. 72nd Ave., Vancouver. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call (360) 771-4858.
Young Democrats of Clark County has partnered with Clark County Democrats to host an Election Night party starting at 7 p.m., Tue., Nov. 8, at Warehouse 23, 100 Columbia St., #112, Vancouver. For more information, see the Young Democrats of Clark County’s Facebook page.