Sound Off

Sound Off: Who is paying for the polls that are open during the pre-voting period and why? Why isn’t Election Day good enough?

According to Douglas County Clerk Jamie Shew, advance voting has not added to the cost of elections in Douglas County. It only involves reallocation of resources. All election costs are part of the county’s election budget, including advance voting. The proportion of the election budget that goes for advance voting has increased in recent election cycles as more people opt to vote in advance. In addition, Shew said, it has become more difficult to find staffing for polling places on Election Day and more facilities have become resistant to being used as polling places. Advance and absentee voting have long been allowed in Kansas for voters who are away on Election Day. That includes college students, military personnel and anyone else who, for whatever reason, would be unavailable on Election Day to cast a ballot in their home precinct. Shew noted that in 2004, there were 9,000 advance ballots cast in Douglas County. In 2008, that grew to 19,000, or 35 percent of all the ballots cast in the county. Of those, 10,000 ballots were cast at the county courthouse, which overloaded resources at that facility. So the office ended up being under-resourced for advance voting and over-resourced for Election Day. As a result, Shew said he reallocated resources for this election cycle to meet the anticipated demand. Shew said there is no indication that advance voting will decrease in the future. Based on voter requests, he expects it will continue to increase.


Gandalf 5 years, 7 months ago

Sounds like this character is mad that people can actually vote. Has to be a teapub!

Bob Forer 5 years, 7 months ago

Only mad that it allows working folks more easily. And of course, teapubs hate the common folk.

costello 5 years, 7 months ago

It was much more convenient for me to vote early. I voted at the fairgrounds on Friday afternoon - a day I have off work.

Since I work in Topeka, it's usually a mad dash from work to some little building on a gravel road that I always have to search for because the roads don't all go through, and I can never remember from election to election which does and which doesn't. So I'm driving around after dark on gravel roads trying to find this little building. It's a hassle. I always vote, but it's always a hassle. Why not take advantage of a more convenient time and place?

Michael Rowland 5 years, 7 months ago

Next sound off question: Would these people like some cheese to go with their whine?

itsalwayssunnyinlarry 5 years, 7 months ago

Are they serious? This question could have been answered by anyone with common sense. It's all about encouraging voter turn out, making it easier on the voter, reducing lines, etc...

1julie1 5 years, 7 months ago

This question sounds like it came from someone who has too much time on their hands and figures everyone else has nothing going on as well. I was very thankful for the early voting so I could vote on my one afternoon off work. Thank you Jamie Shew and your staff and all the poll workers for all of your hard work. It is really appreciated.

Abdu Omar 5 years, 7 months ago

I agree with 1Julie1. Thanks to all the election workers and Jamie Shew for the forsight and desire for all of us to vote early or not. Thanks.

blindrabbit 5 years, 7 months ago

Just got a chance to look at the on-line LJW, but the same thought came to mind as other posters! Story author, probably a gray-faced white old man of Tea-Bagger persuasion; who along with the current SOS Herr KKKobach and the voting officials in Florida and Ohio has voter suppression on his mind., I'd throw in some other likely attributes, but just a waste of space, anyway the readers can probably guess.

Pastor_Bedtime 5 years, 7 months ago

Early voting: get used to it. The trend will be toward making it easier for folks to exercise their right to vote. Train wrecks like what's going on in Florida, with 6 hour waits and panicked election officials closing offices early due to crowds, will guarantee reforms will take place before the next national election. Note that most of the problems this time have taken place in states where the senior election official is a Republican.

blindrabbit 5 years, 7 months ago

Supression of voting rights in states like Florida and Ohio by closing voting places and GOP supported so-called "Voter ID laws" are invitations to (just what the Repubs don't want) more Federal control. Many regulations that have been adopted by the Federal Government and the Justice Department are an attempt to "right the wrong" that individual states have adopted/implermented to limit Federal Civil Rights. So get used to it, or get with the times and remove the impediments.

jonas_opines 5 years, 7 months ago

Is it Really that important to assume a political persuasion to somebody you know nothing about, apart from a single-sentence question?

Cannot simply "foolish" suffice as a descriptor?

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