Today, voters in Clark County and across the United States will cast their ballots in what’s widely considered the most consequential presidential election in a generation.
Around midday Monday, would-be voters were lined up around the block outside the Clark County Elections Office at 1408 Franklin St. in Vancouver, Clark County Auditor Greg Kimsey said, looking to register to vote or drop their ballot off in person.
“It’s crazy. Around the corner, down Mill Plain (Boulevard). Never seen it before, in a presidential election,” Kimsey said.
“We’re humbled by it. We love it.”
Even the day before Election Day, the number of people who had already cast their ballots in Clark County had surpassed the total sum of voters in the 2016 election.
As of Monday morning, 228,831 people had voted, Kimsey’s office reported. By the time the 2016 election was over, 210,760 ballots were cast in all.
The latest tally brings the county’s pre-Election Day voter turnout up to 70.64 percent, a reflection of unprecedented early ballot returns.
The county is also adding new voters to its rolls — 20,136 people have registered to vote just since the August primary. In the four years since the 2016 presidential election, the county added around 52,000 new registered voters.
That four-year growth amounts to nearly double the norm — between 2012 and 2016, for example, the county added just shy of 30,000 new voters. Between 2008 and 2012, it added around 26,000 people to the voter rolls.
As in every prior election, Kimsey’s office won’t have the final tally ready tonight. The initial numbers, which will be posted on the elections office website around 8 p.m., won’t tell the whole story.
“We are estimating that on election night we will have reports on tabulations of about 70 percent of all the ballots,” Kimsey said. “We will have updated preliminary reports daily following that, until we get through them all.”