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Idaho Voter Turnout High, Exact Numbers Unclear

Samantha Wright
Boise State Public Radio

So what percentage of people in Idaho voted?  Idaho Secretary of State Ben Ysursa says that’s a hard number to pin down so soon after Election Day.

“It’s difficult to give a turnout figure based on registered voters because we register voters on Election Day, so that’s a moving target,” Ysursa said.  “History has shown in a Presidential year, there could be 100,000 to 112,000 who have registered on Election Day.”

That said, Ysursa says unofficial numbers show his pre-election guess was right on target. “Looks to me like it’s going be in the mid to high 70 percent of registered, as we anticipated.  We were predicting about 78 percent, I think it’s going be there or just a little bit lower.”

Ysursa says more than 655,000 votes were cast in Idaho on Election Day.  In 2008 more than 667,000 voters cast a ballot in the Gem State. 

Those results won’t be official until all the counties have sent their final numbers in and the state board of canvassers meet on November 21 to certify the election. 

The Idaho Secretary of State reports few problems with yesterday’s election.  So does the Ada County Clerk’s Office.  There, Chief Deputy Clerk Phil McGrane says the problems that did crop up were expected. 

“There were still quite a few people who might go to their old polling place and needed to be redirected, but even that wasn’t in any sort of real large volume,” says McGrane. “Other than that, things went very smoothly.  The counting took a very long time but it went as smoothly as it could it go.”

There was one hitch with tabulating ballots.  One of the seven counting machines broke early in the day, which slowed down the number of ballots that could go through at one time.  The six remaining machines counted 183,000 ballots all night and into the early morning hours to get unofficial results.   

Copyright 2012 Boise State Public Radio

As Senior Producer of our live daily talk show Idaho Matters, I’m able to indulge my love of storytelling and share all kinds of information (I was probably a Town Crier in a past life!). My career has allowed me to learn something new everyday and to share that knowledge with all my friends on the radio.

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