Carson posts state’s highest voter turnout
November 5, 2008
Carson City recorded the best turnout of any Nevada county Tuesday ” a record 93.1 percent of active voters, according to the Secretary of State’s office.
That is 23,745 out of 25,513 active voters.
Clerk Alan Glover had predicted the highest turnout in recent memory after getting nearly 60 percent of those registered to the polls in just early voting.
The turnout is about 5 percent higher than in 2004 and more than 20 percent above the 70 percent turnout in 2000.
Douglas County bettered its 2004 turnout by three-tenths, hitting 92.3 percent. Humboldt hit just a fraction shy of 91 percent and 92.4 percent of Storey County voters went to the polls.
Douglas Clerk Ted Thran said with veteran team leaders and poll workers, everything went smoothly. He said between early voting, absentees and election day, 25,940 went to the polls in Douglas.
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But overall, only eight of Nevada’s 17 counties turned out a higher percentage of voters than four years ago.
The biggest change in voter numbers came from Washoe County, which went from 68.4 percent in 2004 to 77.9 percent Tuesday and recorded 180,253 ballots out of 231,437 registered and active voters.
Statewide, according to Elections Deputy Matt Griffin of the Secretary of State’s office, the turnout was 80 percent. That is better than the 77.66 percent in 2004 or the 70.1 percent in the 2000 election.
Lyon County had an 80 percent turnout ” 21,150 of 26,418 registered and active voters. In Churchill County, 10,695 of 12,238 voted ” 87.4 percent.
Storey County reported 2,420 of 2,620 went to the polls.
Altogether, he said, 967,045 Nevadans went to the polls this election, a record for the state but, not surprising in view of the growing population, the record registration and the enthusiasm generated by this year’s presidential contest.
The 80 percent turnout, however, is pretty much the norm for Nevada in Presidential election years. Since 1952, according to figures from the secretary of state, presidential elections have drawn from 78 percent to 83.4 percent of voters with just one exception. The total vote for president in 1996 ” Bill Clinton v. Bob Dole ” was just 59.7 percent of the total registered.
The highest turnouts came in predictable years. John F. Kennedy v. Richard Nixon in 1960 drew 83.2 percent. Lyndon Johnson and Barry Goldwater attracted 82.8 percent of the electorate in 1964. Ronald Reagan drew an 83.4 percent turnout in 1980 when he beat Jimmy Carter and 83.2 percent when he beat Walter Mondale in 1984.
– Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 687-8750.