Area Early Votes Exceed 14,000

By Sam Charles | Monday, November 5, 2012

Voters lined down Sunnyside Ave. to vote at the Welles Park field house last Saturday. Credit: Mike Fourcher

According to statistics released by the Board of Election Commissioners for the City of Chicago, four area polling places saw a total of 14,170 ballots cast through Nov. 1. Early voting in the city, which lasted for 14 days as opposed to the normal 18, ended on Saturday, Nov. 3. Early voting in Chicago did not require city residents to vote in their ward.

A breakdown of early votes at area polling places through Nov. 1:

  • In the 32nd Ward, 3,603 votes cast at Bucktown-Wicker Park Library.
  • In the 33rd Ward, 1,790 votes cast at Horner Park.
  • In the 40th Ward, 3,103 votes cast at Budlong Woods Library.
  • In the 44th Ward, 4,825 votes cast at Merlo Library.
  • In the 47th Ward, 4,452 votes cast at Welles Park.

“We’re going to come close to what we did four years ago [in 2008],” said Board of Elections spokesman Jim Allen. “But, in 14 days, rather than [2008's] 18 days. The average per day is way higher.”

It was reported that Saturday saw the largest turnout for early voting, with more than 30,000 more votes cast in addition to the 186,707 votes cast through Nov. 1.

There are currently 1,274,736 registered voters in the city, according to the Board of Election Commissioners for the City of Chicago, with 27,771 in the 32nd Ward; 20,619 in the 33rd Ward; 25,403 in the 40th Ward; 26,559 in the 44th Ward; and 29,899 in the 47th Ward.

According to data from the 2010 Census, 76.9 percent of Chicago’s 2.7 million citizens—2.1 million people —were at or above the minimum voting age at the time of the survey. There are more than 7 million registered voters in Illinois, according to the state board of elections.

Comparatively, vote totals in the 2008 general election were:

  • In the 32nd Ward, 38,271 votes were cast.
  • In the 33rd Ward, 15,239 votes were cast.
  • In the 40th Ward, 19,516 votes were cast.
  • In the 44th Ward, 31,141 votes were cast.
  • In the 47th Ward, 29,409 votes were cast.

In the 2008 election, 1,089,879 total votes were cast in Chicago out of a 1,497,292 registered voters. Eighty-five percent of the votes were for President Barack Obama, according to the Board of Election Commissioners for the City of Chicago.

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  • Aaron Berlin

    Those numbers are fishy – assuming there wasn’t a huge change in the number of registered voters in the last four years, turnout in the 47th ward was over 98%! And in the 44th Ward, there are about 5,000 fewer registered voters living in the 44th ward than the number that actually voted in 2008! Can that be right?

    • vouchey

      There’s some different numbers here that don’t necessarily match up. For early voting, you don’t have to live in the ward you vote in. So, for instance, some of early voters at Welles Park were not necessarily from the 47th Ward.

      We apologize for the confusion.

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