Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The Early Vote

 Annapolis -

“Slow and steady,” has been the mantra of the day as I checked in on selected polling stations from Baltimore to Annapolis (with a stop in Columbia). There was one report of a booth which switched from Republican to Democrat (WBAL). It occurred in Baltimore City – the machine was pulled and an attendant made sure the vote was entered for the right candidate. Nicky Charleston of the State Board of Elections (SBE) says they recorded fewer than 30 machines with this switching problem. In the larger sense this is less than .001 of all the machines used in the state. Somehow this problem is not occurring with Democratic votes?

In past elections, some jurisdictions totals waited until they received all their totals before reporting to the SBE. Not the case this election. Once totals are reported (even if all the totals aren’t in) they will reported out. In past elections Baltimore City seem to have a big problem with its total, this jurisdiction will get partial results like the rest of the state.

So when will we see results the moment the polls close. The early vote totals, 8.31% of the eligible voters will be reported out. We may be able to ascertain who got their people out early.

Baltimore’s Write in Candidates

The long odds of Russell Neveradon and Shawn Tarrant winning were on full display at one of the city’s most popular precincts, Ashburton Elementary/Middle School. It’s at this polling station where politicians focus because of its consistent turnout numbers. Bellowing the need to write in Neveradon’s name is a poll work that encourages any and everyone to “Write in Neveradon.”

Standing next to her is a Tarrant surrogate who makes sure they get his literature. On cue, as I walk across the street is Baltimore City Councilman Nick Mosby, the husband of Marilyn Mosby, the Democrat running for State's Attorney. The political Democratic Duo is leaving nothing to chance, even a write in candidate.

The Electorate Mix

Early morning and midday might as well be senior’s hour. They come in vans and cars, taking up the handicap spots on every lot I visited. Many of these voters take the vote seriously. Conversely, at Wilde Lake High school I run into a young pair of voters. As they make their way to polling station they seem more interested who is being profiled at school than who they are going to vote for. It’s this collision of demographics which will become more pronounced as the day wears on.