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Election Day

Wait, that was yesterday. Sorry, I couldn't post about it until the last of my precincts reported—and at my age some of my precincts are moving a little slow.

Anyway, Howard talks about his tradition of naming his election day post after his voter number. I’m thinking, What’s a “voter number?” You’d think I lived in Mayberry or something by the way things went yesterday...

*harp glissandi*

It was about 7:20 as I collected sample ballots from the well-wishers outside the polling place and entered. “Mornin’ Herb.” Herb crossed me off the list, and I ambled over to sign the register. I really didn’t need to show any ID. I also knew one of the people at the sign-in table because he is out walking his dog at all hours. After signing in, I got a slip of paper that said “Voter Ready.” Was I ever, oh boy! More ambling, this time over to the booths (there were two). “Mornin’ Ed,” I said as I handed Ed the slip. And so it went.

I’m sure they tally the total number of voters, but I have no idea what number I was. Next time I’ll find out.

As for the results, well, well, well. I don’t want to use words like mandate or referendum, but it seems to me that at the very least we’re kinda sorta back to a two-party system. Just tickled about that, I am.

UPDATE: I don't know how reliable voter turnout statistics are (because of the way potential voters might be miscounted), but in Montgomery County, Norristown had the lowest turnout (34.47%), while Bryn Athyn had the highest with 62.9%. Eight municipalities boasted over 60% turnout; we were at the bottom of that list. (Source: Times Herald)

Comments

In my neck of the woods, we're still pretty informal, but not quite as much as you guys seem to be.

People almost never seem to show ID at my precinct. I think what they do instead is ask your name. As you give your name, two people are working simultaneously; one is checking an up-to-date print out to see if you're completely able to vote, based on that name, and the other person is opening a big ledger to locate what appears to be a signature card corresponding with your name.

With the poll worker covering your file signature, you sign a blank space. Maybe if that were to not match your signature on file, they might ask for ID. Whatever the case, I think that's how they verify your identity.

After having signed, the poll worker manning the ledger then tells you "__ is your number" (in my case this year, it was 984). Then you move on to the next person who hands you a card displaying the words "Valid Voter."

Having received a little validation, you then feel the slight surge in morale necessary to propel you into the booth.

I don't know if you needed the detailed account, but reading your post was the first time I realized other people don't have the same exact electoral experience as I do.

Howard, thanks for the details. It confirms how similar the process is, actually. Without the folksy narrative sugar, I went through the same steps. The first step involves the big printout. If they clear you to continue, you sign the big ledger. The only difference is they've never covered up the signature card. I think that's a good idea.

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