San Diego

Voter Registrations at All-Time High, Big Turn Out Expected at Polls

Voters waited well over an hour to cast their ballots at the County Registrar of Voter's Office in Kearny Mesa

Entering the final weekend before election day, the San Diego County Registrar of Voters on Friday said the number of the number of registered voters is at an all-time high.

On Friday, voters were lined up outside of the Registrar's office in Kearny Mesa to cast their ballots.

“Voter excitement really hasn’t stopped since November of 2016," Registrar of Voters Michael Vu said. "We have an all-time high of 1.77 million voters.” 

On Friday some were waiting well over an hour to cast their early ballot.

“I’m actually leaving on a work trip to Dallas, so for me, it’s important to cast my ballot before I leave,” LouAnne Ferro of San Carlos said.

Others were here because of the divisive political climate.

“I'm really fatigued by all the divisiveness in the country and constant back and forth with people that you used to get along with over this," Cary Fitzgerald of La Mesa said. "If I sit back and do nothing, then I can’t be angry or anything if I don’t participate in a solution.” 

There are 120,000 more registered voters compared to the 2016 election, according to Vu. And that number could grow because voters can still register up until election night, but only at the registrar's office.

As of Thursday, the registrar received 350,000 mail-in ballots and that number is expected to grow throughout the weekend, Vu said.

The office will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sunday and Monday and will stay open until 8 p.m. on election night.

There’s been a shift in the political party demographics of those casting early ballots, which skewed Republican in years past, Vu said.

Here’s the breakdown of the 350,000 ballots cast:

  • 38 percent are registered Democrats.
  • 36 percent Republican.
  • 21 percent Non Partisan.
  • 4 percent represent minor political parties.

In San Diego County voters will consider 326 contests. That includes 485 candidates, and 52 local and state issues.

Vu is recommending voters sending in mail-in ballots to avoid using the U.S. Postal Service and take advantage of 30 drop-off locations at local libraries and the Registrar’s office.

“I would anticipate and recommend that you don't drop it off through the postal service because we want to make sure we receive it on time," he said. "Any mail ballot that is postmarked on Election Day and received three days after election day will be accepted as timely cast, however, if you're a voter out there, don't chance it.”

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