Election 2008: Election Day Voting Updates in Madison and Dane County, Afternoon Thread
Post by dane101 on 11/4/2008 4:45pm
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5 p.m.: As we enter the five o'clock hour we also enter the after work rush. Few reported numbers have been above 2004's numbers, although most of the wards we have heard from in the last two hours were less than 300 voters away from surpassing the mark. The first Dane101 recorded broken record came from Hoyt School at 3:40 p.m. Michael Donnelly is handling poll duties at Lapham and writes "Things have been pretty calm for the last 4 hours in ward 38. There hadn't been a line. We've been processing absentee ballots non-stop."
4:59 p.m.: Netfluva reports "Vote #1318 at west high. I have never felt half this good about my choice." West High School is Ward 64. In 2004, Ward 64 clocked 1772 votes.
4:50 p.m.: dvgmacdonald reports "I was just voter 2205 at Blackhawk. A healthy flow of voters moving through, but no real wait (in fact, I was in & out in <5 minutes)." Black Hawk Middle School is in Ward 25. In 2004, this polling place saw 2,669 votes.
4:40 p.m.: Critical Badger reports a text message has been received by some students that reads Ã¢â‚¬Å“Due to the long lines expected today, all obama voters are asked to vote on wednesday. Please forward to everyone.Ã¢â‚¬Â Of course, this text message is pure shenanigans and unAmerican.
4:28 p.m.: Linda has a report and some advice:
Nice Boss Man let me leave 15 minutes early to beat the 3:30 rush. Drove from South Towne area to the Madison Ice Arena (where they are still rockin' organized), parked, voted, and was home in a total of 20 minutes!! There were lines for those registering at the polls, but I knew I was in the book so I was able to walk right up to the table and get a ballot. There was no wait for a booth or for the ballot-reader. At 3:37 pm I was voter #1602.
We'll see if it's still easy when I pick up Dear Husband at 5:30 and take him to vote... Note to folks at this polling place: don't create a traffic jam - approach Forward Drive from the east so you can turn right; also turn right onto Schroeder Road westbound when you leave.
The Madison Ice Arena is Ward 98. In 2004 this Ward clocked 1,966 voters.
4:12 p.m.: Phil reports that Memorial Library, Ward 46, is at 1,716. In 2004, Ward 46 had 2,080 votes. Phil writes "7 a.m. rush, otherwise no waits and no snags, CEI surprised that majority of people already registered, that's never happened."
3:50 p.m.: Phil has a duo of reports. Lowell Hall is now up to 1,224. When we last checked in at 11:45 a.m. 780 votes had been cast. Tripp Commons has clocked 1,035 voters. According to this Daily Cardinal article in 2004 Tripp Commons had seen more than 1,200 voters by 6 p.m.
3:40 p.m.: We have our first reported broken record. Jason Dean reports he was number 2109 at Hoyt School. That would be ward number 70 where 1760 votes were made in 2004. Kerry had 1,483 and Bush had 260. VOTERS SMASH!!!
3:18 p.m.: I (Bessie) walked down State Street to get lunch. I was thrilled to run into two obviously exhausted but still happy energetic young women handing out candy and Obama swag. They gave me a coveted "I Voted" sticker as well as a Kit Kat bar, and invited me to an Obama party at Coliseum Bar later. 2 blocks later, another young volunteer gave me an "I Voted For Change" sticker to add to my collection. I was struck by the overwhelming Obama enthusiasm on the street. A little boy wore a huge Obama scarf as a cape. A girl walked by talking about how she cried for ten minutes while watching Obama announce his grandmother's death. On Library Mall, makeshift stands sold unique Obama tshirts and buttons, while "Vote Obama" was chalked all over the sidewalks. The hub of the operation was a white tent in the middle of Library Mall full of Badgers for Obama. Way to go, Democrats, the energy and passion of these efforts can certainly be felt here, which should make all of us proud of our country no matter what our political leanings. However, it begs the question, where on earth is the Republican GOTV effort focused (or even existent) here in Madison?
3:18 p.m.: Rich says he voted about a hour and a half ago and he was voter 2000 and something in Sun Prairie.
3:04 p.m. Kari Armstrong reports "I just got back from voting at La Follette High School. There was no line, and I believe they said I was approx. vote 1000 or so. I attached a picture of my daughter, who helped me vote." La Follette is ward 10. In 2004, the ward had 1,452 votes.
2:56 p.m.: The Entertainment Shack shows us where all of the McCain signs are in Madison.
2:38 p.m.: Milwaukee has suspended issuing parking tickets near polling places for the day.
2:21 p.m.: Bridget Maniachi has supplied a very detailed report and has pictures "from James Madison, and pictures from State Street and the downtown Obama office last night."
"I was voter 295 this morning at 8:15 am at Gates of Heaven. Also, an Obama volunteer just rang my doorbell and gave me an "I Voted" sticker. I asked him if they were keeping track of who had already voted, and he said not exactly, they were keeping track by how many stickers they were handing out. He gave me an extra sticker to put next to my buzzer, so that no one else would ring my doorbell today.
The pictures show a long line of about 100 people at Gates of Heaven, but it only took about a half hour to vote, and when I came out, the line outside was down to about 20 people. I saw at least 8 people I knew, some going back to high school. I missed the saxaphonist.
Last night I saw kids (not knowing its against city ordinances) going nuts on stickering light poles and bus stops. Five minutes later close to BW3s I saw two Madison police officers pulling political (mostly Obama) stickers off of light poles.
I swung by the Obama State Street office after that, let the staffers I know about the poles & police, took some nice candids, and then went home.
The boyfriend and I woke up early (7am) so we could both go vote before work. Some of the friends I ran into had thought about calling me this morning so we could all go to the polls together."
2 p.m.: Quacktastico reports "took 40 minutes at Our Redeemer Church in W. Madison. number 1369. talked with organizer - turnout way higher than expected"
1:48 p.m.: Huzzah! Free beer! Bessie reports that Hawk's on State Street is giving away free Goose Island 312 to anyone who voted (21+ of course). Please also see the Beer Desk's recommendations on what beers to consume on election night.
1:33 p.m.: We have our first official update of the day from Hiz Honor da Mayor's Communication Director Rachel Strauch-Nelson:
"The polls and the clerk's office are obviously buzzing today. As of our first roundup at 11am, we had 42,236 voters. This isn't a foolproof number, however - if anything, it will rise when as we get more complete counts.
As a reminder, our absentee ballot total as of last night was 32,012."
Worth noting, these numbers are for the City of Madison. In all of Dane County in 2004, 274,249 votes were cast. So, including absentee ballots, 74,248 ballots had been cast as of 11 a.m. in Madison alone. That is roughly 27 percent of the entire 2004 Dane County vote in the can as of 11 a.m.
1:30 p.m.: An hour ago at Ald. District #2 in Stoughton, Sean says: "I was the 763rd voter/761st ballot. No problem, and ID wasn't requested. My neighbor noted that our ballots were going to cancel each other out; hope it wasn't electioneering for her to say so."
1:30 p.m.: Dusty Weis reports "There is a tuba and accordian duet playing oom-pa-pa music outside of Fitchburg City Hall as of 12:30... Wait is about 5 minutes..." He also writes on his blog:
Honestly, it feels more like a party than election day.
Here in Madison, nobody's somber, nobody's out to just do their civic duty. Everybody's out with a purpose, and everybody feels good. On my way to work, there was a man on ten-foot stilts dancing at the corner of East Wash and Paterson holding a sign for Obama. Outside of Fitchburg city hall, there was an accordian and tuba duet set up playing oom-pa-pa music. Every other block on Fish Hatchery road are people waving signs and balloons.
Everybody is smiling.
1:27 p.m.: Eric reports "The Obama campaign had a tent set up on Libary Mall to direct students to their polling places - Governor Doyle was there. Also overhead was an airplane with an Obama banner. There was also an Obama mobile billboard driving down Langdon St."
1:25 p.m.: Maurice reports "No line & No ID @ Crestwood 53717. They had 1500 voters in 2004 and are past 1600 already with 7 hours to go." Crestwood Elementary is Ward 75. Actually, they had 2,309 voters in 2004. Still, very solid turn out and that number doesn't include any early or absentee voting.
1:10 p.m.: Michael C. reports from Fitchburg's Wards 1-3 where more than 1,200 have cast votes so far. To put it in perspective in 2004, 2,552 voted in those wards.
12:39 p.m.: Barry Orton just voted at Van Hise Elementary School (Ward 72) and reports that "970 votes are in the can." No line. In 2004, Ward 72 saw 1469 voters.
12:30 p.m.: Andy voted around 10ish at O'Keefe Middle School. He reports "Ballot scanner was full, and had to be emptied while I was in line just after 10 am. I was voter #1001, and only stood in line about 15 minutes or so." O'Keefe is Ward 34. In 2004, 2782 votes were cast.
12:20 p.m.: Phil reports:
- Only one person ahead of me at the "already registered" line. One person in the "new registration" line.
- Poll workers said that other than right now, it's been extremely busy all day (especially right at 7am), but with no glitches or problems; said they've processed a ton of absentee ballots
- Me = voter #653
MATC is in Ward 41. In 2004, 1,450 voters turned out to vote.
12:15 p.m.: Valerie reports "no line at east high at 11:45am. i was voter #954. whooo!" In 2004, 1,796 individuals cast their votes in Ward 32 (East High School)
High Noon: Barry Orton has provided us with the numbers from the heavy student Ward 40 at Lowell Hall. According to Orton as of 11:45 a.m. they had 780 votes in the can (this does not include any absentee or early voters). In 2004, after all was said and done, 1884 had voted at Lowell Hall. 1494 went for Sen. John Kerry. Orton also reports that City of Madison Zoning Administrator Matt Tucker has received "ton of complaints about Nader signs in the median of major roads. Trying to get cops to pull them off of the more dangerous medians. He has never seen a campaign be as reckless with public property."