Even record-breaking flooding in some areas could not deter voters in King County Tuesday, who turned out in greater-than-expected levels countywide, leading to ballot shortages in some polling locations.
Although elections officials expected only a 20 percent turnout of poll voters, they prepared each polling place with enough materials for a 60 percent turnout. Still, workers in 55 polling places ran short of ballots and provisional ballots for some precincts.
Based on long-standing procedures for how to deal with running out of both regular and provisional ballots, poll workers provided several options to make sure every voter had a chance to cast a ballot. Voters could:
• Cast a ballot on an electronic Accessible Voting Unit.
• Use a Chinese language ballot, along with a sample English language ballot: Both have the exact same layout and proper names of candidates are in English, not translated into Chinese characters.
• Use a different ballot style from another precinct with all the same races and ballot measures.
Poll workers said that all voters at precincts with ballot shortages were able to use one of these options successfully. There were no reported shortages at the remaining 453 polling places throughout the county.
"Voters clearly responded to requests to cast a mail-in or provisional ballot by the deadline to make sure their vote would count," said Jim Buck, interim director of Records, Elections and Licensing Services. "Despite the ballot challenges, staff made sure people could cast a vote. So ultimately, this big turnout is good for democracy."
Elections staffers expect to follow the tabulation schedule posted online at http://www.metrokc.gov/elections/200611/resultsSchedule.asp.
The following are winning candidates and ballot measures from King County as of Wednesday morning:
Maria Cantwell (D): 196,255; 66.71 percent
U.S. Representative, strict 7
Jim McDermott (D): 90, 903; 79.47percent
State Initiative 920
Repeal estate tax
No: 190,414; 61 percent
State Initiative 933
Require compensation when government regulation damage the use or value of property
No: 188,682; 66 percent
State Initiative 937
Requires utilities to meet targets for energy conservation and use of renewable energy sources
Yes: 171,324; 60 percent
House Joint Resolution 4223
Increases personal property tax exemption
Yes: 220,842; 79 percent
King County Proposition 1
Authorization to sell or exchange real property
Yes: 172,949; 67 percent
King County Proposition 2
Transportation sales and use tax
Yes: 155,456; 56 percent
Seattle Initiative 91
Requires for-profit pro-sports organizations to pay fair value for goods, services, real property or facilities the city provides or leases
Yes: 70,943; 74 percent
Seattle Referendum 1
Approve the city ordinance regulating adult entertainment
No: 62,731; 64 percent
Seattle Proposition 1
Yes: 52,480; 54 percent
State Senator, District 37
Adam Kline (D): 12,786; 87 percent
State Representative, District 37 – Pos. 1
Sharon Tomiko Santos (D): 12,424; 99 percent
State Representative, District 37 – Pos. 2
Eric Pettigrew (D): 12,934; 89 percent