Open Thread on Election Day

So what's going on out there in Orange County?

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I got to Carrboro Elementary today at about 6:35, to beat the crowds. Unfortunately, the crowds came to beat the crowds. I left there about 7:15 or later. I heard polling sites were empty this afternoon.

By the way, what's the best place to get local results? Radio? Web? And when can we expect to hear local and state results?

I got to Kings Mill precinct (Aldersgate United Methodist) at 6:33 and there were 70 people in line ahead of me. By the time I left (about 7:10) the line was much shorter.

I am not sure if this was more of the "avoiding lines" crowd or the "voting on the way to work" crowd.

Voted at the library this morning. There was a bit of a line @ 7:10, but by the time I left @ 7:40, there was only 50 or so waiting.

By 7:40. 185 votes had been cast. A 'greeter' told me that only 900 unaffiliated and Dem voters hadn't already voted in the Estes Hills precinct, so having roughly 1/5th of that number already turn out by 8am bodes well for that precinct.

People in line were upbeat, happy to get on with the vote. I know that this is Chapel Hill, but there was a very positive vibe, as if those gathered could feel the warm winds of change blowing strong.

I'm off to the far northern reaches of Orange county to observe the election. I'm hoping my presence will be completely unneeded. I'm also hoping that those that plan to disrupt the elections will reflect on the sacrifices our forebears made to make voting possible and in that moment of reflection they stand down - that they honor those that built this democracy which lately seems to be teetering on the brink - and let all our voices be heard.

At a certain polling place, around 6:45 a.m. a testy Republican was standing in line. She chewed out a democratic greeter and said "shame on you" (amongst other things) when she heard the greeter assist the democratic voter who requested help in filling out a ballot for the democrats(well outside the building outside of any 50 foot boundaries). She interpreted the situation as influencing the person's vote, which was not the case.

In Patterson Precinct, we have had around 750 folks vote. I understand that we had 1600 or so early Dem and Unaff voters in Patterson. I am not sure how many Reps voted early. If you add the early vote totals to today's vote and assume about 300 Reps voted early then that makes around 2700 voters in Patterson and we still have 4 hours left. I understand that there are about 3400 people registered in Patterson. This makes a turnout of about 80% already. We are shooting for 90%, which is unheard of.

Damascus precinct had 771 people vote + 19 provisional ballots. All the Dems won handily. Amendment One passed by 67 votes in our precinct.

In an earlier thread I suggested people take a picture ID and something showing their current address. At least a couple of OPers told me that wasn't necessary, including the Democrats counsel. In the 4 hours I was at the polls observing, approximately 8 people were told they had to have both a picture ID and something official with their address on it. They (all students) grumbled, but they all went home found something and came back.

Burr is on TV thanking those people that helped him win NC Senate (supposedly) but he's forgotten to thank the most important person to his campaign - Bill Clinton - his self-assigned opponent.

BAD news on Ohio folks.

I just looked at every county. Bush's partial counties actually outweigh Kerry's by about 10,000 votes, on top of Bush's 120,000 lead.

If Bush gets Colorado on top of that, and that race is not as close as Ohio, then Bush gets re-elected.

That's my prediction. Bush has won.

(I'd still like to get inside those Republican Diebold voting machines in Florida and Ohio.)

I realize that doesn't quite equal 269. But I'm pessimistic about being about to sweep the rest (but Nevada).

I am newly registered in Orange County (just moved here) and fully expected to be ask to show ID, but was not. I wonder if this is something that's being asked only of students? Actually, I *am* a student, but I guess I meant undergrads.

I spent the day (10:30-7:30) at Caldwell precinct, the "most Republican" precinct in Orange county.

The turnout was stupendous.

2298 people were registered, 571 cast early ballots and 1136 came in today to make their voice heard. With the 20+ provisional ballots cast, we had a %75 turnout.

I just got back into WiFi range so I don't know if this was mirrored elsewhere, but I sure hope it was mirrored in pro-Kerry areas.

The polls were well run by the local staff that diligently managed the site. Sure, there were some whoopsies, like the electric cord being pulled on the voting machine, the jammed ballots, the mysterious four-time rejection of one guys ballot (problem solved), etc. but overall the place hummed.

There was a few oddities, like the one guy I thought was going to start spouting about the Bildeberger's and the House of Hannover or the poll worker that asked me if I was one of the "good guys" (who, when asked who the "good guys" were flashed me the three-fingered W salute), but generally it was just regular people going about their democratic business. Hey, even if the vote probably was 2 to 1 for Bush, it was great to see such an orderly, almost mundane, exercise of our power as citizens.

One voter, though, I'd like to single out. This young women, with a 1 month baby, had been sent from Caldwell (located 15 miles or so NE of Hillsborough) back to Chapel Hill to vote. She was sent from Chapel Hill back to Caldwell, where the poll workers, erroneously, thought she was registered in Person county. Off to Person county she went, only to find out that she wasn't registered there! She returned to Caldwell, again 1-month old in tow, to, luckily, find out she could vote provisionally in Orange county. She started sometime before 1pm and cast her vote after 6pm.

When I reflect on this day, I'll remember this young women - she didn't complain, she didn't give up - she buckled down and did what needed to be done.

I hope President Kerry will shine as bright.


Burr, it's warm in NC.

Puff goes the weasel.

It's a beautiful day, unless you live in world.

I want to congratulate the local Orange County Dems for out performing the Republicans 10:1 in participation and organization. I worked a poll yesterday and was impressed by the major showing of Dem greeters, observers, runners, and other participants in the process. I was embarrased by the Republican effort on the local level.

my husband and I got to the Weaver Dairy precinct at 6:45 and noticed the craziest thing. There were 95 people in line for the names starting with A-L and no one in line for names starting with M-Z. This strange distribution continued throughout the morning, and by the time we voted at 8:15 am or so, only 7 people had gone through the M-Z line by our count, and the A-L line continued to string around the parking lot. Anyone else notice such a weird thing?

It would be an interesting statistical study--why was the skew so great at Weaver Dairy?


There was something similar at King's Mill early yesterday morning. They had a shortage of N-Z voters but plenty of A-M voters. Poll workers had to go down the line asking to find people for the N-Z table. Maybe people in the second half of the alphabet aren't morning people!!

I was the Chief Judge in Cedar Grove and we saw the same large numbers in the morning for the A-M and a short line for N-Z. A-M must the morning people. We had a line until 8:30 and little to no wait the rest of the day I would say the early crowd waited maybe 30 minutes. When you add in the one stop voters we voted 78% in Cedar Grove.

I was a Judge at Greenwood, and we too had a heavy distribution of A-M all day.

Look what I found in the phonebook:
A-M, pp. 1-256.
N-Z, pp. 256-401.

M-N is the wrong threshold for names.

Jeff--perhaps you should fire off a helpful suggestion to the BOE?

Interesting, the voter registration books at our precinct weren't the same thickness either, we noticed that when we voted. A-M was much thicker!

Time to give the Board of Elections a head's up!


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