Record number of absentee ballots cast in Clay County
Loss of power slows, but doesn't stop, process
At the peak of the 6 p.m. rush, the electronic voter registration confirmation process took a hit at the Clay County Regional Events Center Tuesday; but the process, although slowed, continued as 67 percent of the eligible voters in the county took part in the general election process.
Many county voters opted to use the absentee/early voting opportunity. As a matter of fact, the numbers of early voters was off the chart.
"The absentee ballots were way higher than we've ever had," Clay County Auditor Marge Pitts said. "Before we've had maybe 2,400 ballots."
The 2012 count exceeded 3,745.
Pitts noted that turnout at the polls was very steady but down a bit from previous years.
"Now, looking back on the numbers, there weren't as many people coming out as we expected. There were many new election day registrations, well over 100 in just the Spencer area, not counting outlying areas and they were busy too," Pitts said.
A total of 214 new voters cast ballots in Clay County.
During the heart of the evening voting, electronic service to the voter registration verification was lost for approximately 40 minutes, slowing the process.
"We were totally prepared for it," Pitts said. "We had a backup plan."
She continued, "We had such a volume of people, just about 6 p.m. There were so many people, so it added to the delay. ... The volunteers did an excellent job of switching from doing things electronically to the paper version."
The county auditor credited her precinct officials on-site for keeping the process moving.
"It sounds to me like the access overloaded," Pitts explained. "The staff at the events center rebooted the access point and we were back online. We just had to find the person to get it rebooted."
Traffic slowed as the 9 p.m. close drew near. "By 8:30 p.m. there was nobody in the precinct. I was surprised. I thought we'd be going past 9 o'clock. But they vanished."
The process was completed by 9:50 p.m. at the auditor's office, where the county results were forwarded to the Iowa Auditor's office.
Clay County Election Notes
- 62 percent of registered Republicans cast ballots
- 38 percent of registered Democrats cast ballots
- Of the total ballots cast, 1,208 Republicans voted straight ticket, and 748 Democrats voted straight ticket
Clay County Election Results
|Mitt Romney (R)||4,934||58%|
|Barack Obama (D)||3,363||39.75%|
United States Representative District 4
|Steve King (R)||4,839||58%|
|Christie Vilsack (D)||3,298||40%|
|Martin James Monroe (NBP)||200||2%|
Iowa State Representative District 2
|Megan Hess (R)||4,618||55%|
|Steve Bomgaars (D)||3,701||44%|
|Marjorie Pitts (R)||6,834||99.5%|
Clay County Township Trustee
|Kevin E. White||80||57%|
Douglas Township Trustee
|James G. Larson||46||92%|
Freeman Township Trustee
|Michael L. White||96||98%|
Garfield Township Trustee
|Bennett L. Greene||69||87%|
Gillett Grove Township Trustee
Herdland Township Trustee
Herdland Township Clerk to fill vacancy
Lake Township Trustee
Lake Township Trustee to fill vacancy
Lincoln Township Trustee
Lincoln Township Clerk to fill vacancy
Logan Township Trustee
|Curtis C. Salton||74||51%|
|Wyatt W. Brinkley||69||48%|
Lone Tree Township
|John W. Goeken||90||95%|
Meadow Township Trustee
Meadow Township Trustee to fill vacancy
Meadow Township Trustee to fill vacancy
Peterson Township Trustee
Riverton Township Trustee
|Jerry R. Beck||121||47%|
Sioux Township Trustee
Summit Township Trustee
Waterford Township Trustee
Soil and Water Conservation District Commissioner
Agricultural Extension Council
|Candace J. Daniels||4,098||22%|
City of Greenville Treasurer to fill vacancy
City of Rossie Council Member to fill vacancy
City of Royal Council Member to fill vacancy
City of Webb Council Member to fill vacancy
|Michael R. Hildebrand||31||44%|
Supreme Court Edward Mansfield
Supreme Court Thomas D. Waterman
Supreme Court David S. Wiggins
Supreme Court Bruce B. Zager
Court of Appeals Anuradha Vaitheswaran
Court of Appeals Michael R. Mullins
Court of Appeals Mary Ellen Tabor
District Court 3A David Lester
District Court 3A Nancy L. Whittenburg
District Court 3A Associate Judge Donald J. Bormann