Voter turnout near 2016 level
Stutsman County voter turnout for the 2020 election was slightly down from 2016 although a few votes are still coming in, according to Jessica Alonge, interim Stutsman County auditor and chief operating officer.
As of Tuesday evening, the unofficial tally stood at 10,024 votes including absentee votes, early voting and voting at the polling place. This compares to 10,345 ballots cast in 2016 and 9,680 votes cast in 2012.
Stutsman County voters cast 4,385 votes by the absentee process, 2,747 by early voting and 2,892 at the Jamestown Civic Center polling place on Election Day. This compares to 1,487 by absentee, 2,395 by early voting and 6,963 at the polling place in 2016.
Alonge said the reduced number of people voting on Election Day limited the time people spent at the polling place and potential crowds.
Vote totals remain unofficial until the Stutsman County Canvassing Board meets at 10 a.m. on Nov. 9 at the Stutsman County commission room. At that time, the board will review a number of ballots, Allonge said. The meeting will be streamed live on the Stutsman County Facebook page.
Issues to be considered by the canvassing board include 14 absentee ballots that were not processed because of signature issues, 16 absentee ballots missing affidavits or deposited in the wrong deposit box and any additional absentee ballots postmarked Nov. 2 or earlier that arrive at the Stutsman County courthouse prior to the canvassing board. There were three ballots received Wednesday that would be counted, and additional ballots may still arrive, Alonge said.
There are approximately 1,055 absentee ballots that were sent out but not returned as of Election Day. Those people may have voted through the early voting process or at the poll on Election Day or decided not to vote at all.
There are also 21 ballots that were set aside on Election Day when voters did not have valid identification at the time. The voter has until the time of the canvassing board to produce identification at the courthouse and have the ballot counted. As of noon Wednesday, three voters had furnished identification, Alonge said.