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Voter turnout similar to the 2008 election
Voters waited Tuesday afternoon for election-day voter registration at the Fremont Center in Riverton. Photo by Steven Peck

Voter turnout similar to the 2008 election

Nov 7, 2012 - By Christina George, Staff Writer

Fremont County Clerk Julie Freese said 17,078 people voted in Tuesday's election.

The figure is higher than the 16,219 registered voters reported, but Freese attributed part of the increase to individuals who registered at the polls.

According to Freese's report, there are 11,060 registered Republicans in Fremont County, 3,502 Democrats, 1,579 who affiliate with other parties and 78 registered Libertarians. Most of the county's voters -- 8,599 -- are females, the report also noted.

Freese said an official count of registered voters will be known in 30 days.

This year's turnout is higher than the 13,889 voters reported in the 2010 general election. However, Freese said the latest number is comparable to that of 2008 when the election involved a presidential candidacy. That year, 17,715 submitted ballots.

Absentee ballots

Freese said her office received 3,427 of the 3,511 absentee ballots sent out this year. Most of the ones received -- 2,029 -- were distributed through mail. Another 1,368 of the total were issued over the counter at the election office.

According to her report, 3,345 absentee ballots were received from residents opting to cast their ballot before Tuesday's election. Another 53 of the ballots came from those in the military, two were received from military personnel serving overseas and 27 came from Fremont County citizens residing overseas.

Although this year's figure is considerably higher than the 2,575 absentee ballots received in the 2010 election, Freese said it is similar to 2008 when 3,439 were received.

"I think more and more of our society don't want just one day to vote," she said. "Some people don't want just one day to decide."

The number of absentee ballots received in the 2008 election remains the highest the county has seen for nearly two decades, according to Freese's records dating back to 1994.

Election day

With the exception of two voters casting ballots in the wrong precincts, Freese said Tuesday's election process had minimal hiccups.

"It went fairly well," she said.

One ballot machine broke down in Arapahoe just before polls opened at 7 a.m., but Freese said a backup machine was taken to the precinct and voting was not affected.

"There was no one in line waiting," she said.

There was also concern about having enough ballots and registration cards. Freese's staff ended up making three separate orders of supplies to assure there were enough for the county's 32 precincts.

"We were close in some areas, but there were no shortages," Freese said.

The Fremont County Canvassing Board will meet at 2 p.m. Thursday at the courthouse to make the election results official.

"At this time I do not see any automatic recounts," Freese said.

She said a recount is required if there is a 1 percent difference between the winning and losing candidates in their respective races.

"Nobody has asked for one," Freese added.

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