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*** UPDATED x1 *** Early afternoon precinct reports

Tuesday, Nov 2, 2010

*** UPDATE *** These are very good bellwethers

Just about every strategist I’ve spoken with says that Chicagoans, particularly African-Americans, have to turn out [at least 50 percent] for Democrats Alexi Giannoulias and, particularly, Gov. Pat Quinn to have a shot against Republicans Mark Kirk and Bill Brady in the U.S. Senate and governor races, respectively.

A 50% turnout would be about 660,000 voters. The Chicago Board of Elections traditionally gives turnout projections during the day, so look to see what they report. And, of course, they’ll be putting totals on the board’s website. […]

The [58th House District has] a Democratic incumbent, Karen May. The [17th House District] is an open seat now held by Republican Beth Coulson, who gave up her job to stage an unsuccessful race for Congress.

If Republicans are serious about knocking out House Speaker Michael Madigan, they almost certainly have to hang onto the 17th while taking a dozen other seats. And if they snag the 58th, a Republican rout likely is under way.

The Cook County Clerk’s Office should provide the best up-to-the-minute vote totals in the 17th, with Cook and the Lake County Clerk’s Office covering the 58th.

If the HGOPs take out May, this thing is over. If they take out Biss, it’s gonna be close.

…Adding… I posted this in comments…

Chicago turnout four years ago was 49.25 percent. The state as a whole averaged 41.4 percent.

The city’s turnout in 2002 was 53.1 percent. Statewide average was 40.2 percent.

[ *** End Of Update *** ]

* This AP story tells us nothing

A spokesman for the Chicago Board of Elections said there appears to be a stronger interest in Tuesday’s elections than in the spring primaries.

That’s a pretty darned low bar, considering how miserable the turnout was in the primary.

* This tells us almost nothing

[Mark Kirk] said he had spoken with officials in New Trier who said turnout “was extremely heavy,” and had heard that turnout in parts of Chicago wasn’t as strong.

Careful what you believe on election day.

* This tells us a wee bit more

Willard Helander, the Lake County Clerk, told PI this morning that the polls in her county were “not crazy, but busy.” She said it was “extremely probable” that turnout would be “higher than 52 percent.” One of the reasons: voter referendums, such as the historic effort to recall Buffalo Grove Trustee Lisa Stone. Over in Kane County, Clerk John Cunningham said he expected roughly 90,000 and 100,000 of the 213,000 eligible voters in his county to cast a ballot by day’s end.

* An absentee ballot report

Chicago and Cook County election officials said they are continuing to receive a flood of absentee ballots, some delivered by mail this morning.

“We still have thousands of them coming in,” said Courtney Greve, a spokeswoman for Cook County Clerk David Orr. “We received 4,500 (Monday).”

Greve did not have an estimate for how many total absentee ballots would be cast in suburban Cook County. Through Monday, the number stood at 14,000. […]

In Chicago, about 20,000 absentee ballots had been cast so far, said Langdon Neal, executive director of the board, who said hundreds more arrived by mail this morning. Absentee ballots had to be postmarked by Monday to be tallied in the election.

A lot more absentee ballots are still out there. Here are the IMA numbers for absentee requests for the city and the county…

Chicago – 28,984
Suburban Cook – 33,351

* Latest headline from the Washington Post

In Illinois, all eyes on Obama’s former Senate seat

All eyes? If you ask the city’s editors, all eyes are on Mayor Daley’s job.

* Speaking of the city, Rahm sends out an e-mail and Politico covers it

Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel used a new list of supporters from his recently launched Chicago mayoral campaign to help Democratic Senate nominee Alexi Giannoulias get out the vote Tuesday.

Emanuel, once the head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, wrote in an e-mail blast that Chicago voters need to show up at the polls to ensure Republicans “don’t derail the president’s agenda.

* Speaking of headlines

Confident Gov. Quinn votes, says he has no regrets

Some of us do.

* The Southern Illinoisan sold an unusual ad to Bill Brady’s campaign yesterday. The entire front page of the newspaper’s website was wrapped with a Brady campaign message. Click the pic for a larger image…

My brother asked…

What if a local news channel had a campaign graphic surrounding the newscast the night before elections?

Don’t give ‘em any ideas, man.

* One 47th Ward denizen used his/her yard sign collection to frighten the kids but good on Halloween…

* Make sure to tell us what’s going on in your precinct.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

62 Comments
  1. - Pale Rider - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 12:45 pm:

    I was number 278 in Pawnee 3 at 11:00. Not bad turn out for the tiny precinct.


  2. - Quinn T. Sential - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 12:49 pm:

    {The accident happened just before 6 a.m. outside Balzekas Motor Sales, 4030 S. Archer Ave., where a polling location was being set up, said Robert Balzekas, an employee of the Brighton Park neighborhood dealership. It had not yet opened to voters.

    Balzekas said Munoz was crossing Archer when a 1994 or 1995 Nissan barreled down the diagonal street heading southeast. He said the car was traveling between 30 and 40 mph when it struck Munoz.}

    Balzekas family dealership has been in business; and I believe on Archer Ave. for 90 years.

    I would love for someone to have asked him how the car could have been traveling southeast on Archer Ave.

    I wonder if he has someone drive him to work every day.


  3. - CircularFiringSquad - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 12:56 pm:

    Willard is the crazy one in Lake County. This is about the time she starts warning GOP pct folks to tell voters immigration are coming, etc.

    Turnout around the country see Ds voting in big numbers hope the “wave” isn’t going limp


  4. - Cincinnatus - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 12:57 pm:

    More DuPage numbers (continued from previous thread) indicates still tracking to 60% turn out. New calculations based on historical trends indicates to me that DuPage will be about +75-100K voters with Republican leanings (and probably votes to the Republican ticket).


  5. - OneMan - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 12:58 pm:

    Well my wife informed me that at our pct. the assisted living center that it is located in provided muffins and cookies for the judges and then a lovely chicken Cesar salad.

    Oh, in terms of voter turnout….

    A bit heavier than I expected about 1/3 of normally active voters have shown up.


  6. - Vote Quimby! - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:00 pm:

    Lunchtime check shows more have voted in my precinct than total votes in primary (turnout then was 32%).


  7. - 42nd Ward - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:01 pm:

    Heavy turnout reports on Chicago’s North Lakefront. Some precincts already at 60%.


  8. - North Shore - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:01 pm:

    I was voter 238 in a polling place with three precincts at 7:00 am this morning. Busy but no lines yet.


  9. - LN - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:03 pm:

    Very high turnout in the tiny southern precinct I’m watching. Something that has interested me is the high number of voters who have left certain offices blank. Our machine beeps if an office is not voted for, but I’m not sure if it happens for federal or state offices.


  10. - shore - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:03 pm:

    that yard sign thing is outstanding. There are no seals signs or quinn signs or biss signs anywhere in new trier. If you got off a plane from tokyo and went to winnetka you’d think brady, kirk, dold and chang were the only candidates on the ballot.


  11. - Jo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:05 pm:

    judges, LN


  12. - LN - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:08 pm:

    Jo, thanks. Just so I’m clear: it alerts you if you have not voted for judges only?


  13. - Jo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:09 pm:

    no, it alerts for any undervote. Its just that people usually skip over the judges.


  14. - 26th Ward resident - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:12 pm:

    A Humboldt Park precinct: heavy turn out.


  15. - LN - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:13 pm:

    Ok. I wasn’t sure if the machines could distinguish between offices or not.


  16. - Chathamite - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:15 pm:

    I voted at 6:30 am in Chatham, Sangamon Co. Very deep red part of Central IL. I was # 37. No wait at that time, but saw a FB post a bit ago from someone else who voted in Chatham that they were # 700 something. Not sure how believable that is though…


  17. - Anonymous ZZZ - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:19 pm:

    I didn’t vote for some offices, and I got no alerts at all, just a “thank you for voting!” My bigger fear was overvoting - there were so many judges crammed onto the ballot for retention, I was concerned I might have accidentally marked “yes” AND “no” on the question of retention for a few of the judges.


  18. - 42nd Ward - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:22 pm:

    Real trouble is brewing in Chicago Hispanic wards on the North Side. Reports of unsealed ballot boxes and CPD being called to “deal with” protesting GOP pollwatchers. Illinois GOP hired lawyer teams nowhere to be found. Let’s see what shakes out.


  19. - Rayne of Terror - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:22 pm:

    50 people were in line in LeRoy (McLean Co) at 6 a.m. All three precincts vote in the same church and when I went at 11 a.m. each precinct had a line and every voting cubical was full. The parking lot was about 1/2 full. There was not a single dem yard sign outside the church and only 1 repub yard sign.


  20. - DoubleDown - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:24 pm:

    I have a friend who voted in Lockport (a Demo) he did not vote for either AJ Wilhelmi or Creda Crenshaw and the machine beeped, he told the person he did not vote in certain races, that it was okay


  21. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:26 pm:

    42nd Ward, be more specific please, or send me an email. Thanks.


  22. - 47th Ward, 47th Precinct - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:31 pm:

    At 12 p.m., I was #245 (ballot) and #246 (constitutional amendment) in this corner of Roscoe Village. Having only 123 (246/2) voters at that hour is a pretty light turnout.

    The real surprise (and delight) was that the usual array of goons who stand outside the polling place handing out literature, stomping their feet, and otherwise looking out-of-place, were nowhere to be seen.


  23. - Concerned Observer - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:31 pm:

    DD (and others) — There was a yellow sheet of paper in my polling ‘booth’ (in “Lockport”) that warned that the machine would beep if you undervoted for any of certain races. But at the bottom of that paper, there was a bold-print statement saying it’s in no way an endorsement for undervoting or a requirement that you vote in every race.

    Everyone should get that piece of paper, IMO.


  24. - (618) Democrat - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:33 pm:

    Just spoke with our county Clerk. Our county is a rural southern county, 13,000 voters. Our Clerk says from what she has seen so far her prediction would be a 30% to 40% turn out here.


  25. - Scott Reeder - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:35 pm:

    Spaulding Township Hall in Sangamon County was packed with a long line waiting to vote.


  26. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:36 pm:

    I was #50 at Carterville-2 at 8 a.m. Don’t know what that means…but all 5 voting booths were full when I was there and there was a steady steam coming in the door.


  27. - LN - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:37 pm:

    Concerned Observer: the election judges at my precinct have been informing voters it’s okay to undervote, they just want to make sure voters have undervoted on purpose. There are similar signs in the polling booths like you mentioned.


  28. - MrJM - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:37 pm:

    @Jo - Voters are NOT alerted to under-votes in DuPage County. The first time you put the ballot in — no matter how many races you’ve skipped — it’s gone.

    – MrJM


  29. - Downstater - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:44 pm:

    Saw my county clerk at lunch (South Central Illinois). Some precincts are particularly heavy, but not all.
    Most off-year elections have a 48% turnout. County clerk is forcasting 55%.
    He had been hoping/expecting 60% plus, but doesn’t think we’ll see that.


  30. - Jeff - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:52 pm:

    Wouldn’t anybody needing 50% turnout be grasping at straws? Most midterms run in the mid 40’s historically. Is AA turnout higher than the rest of the electorate?


  31. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:55 pm:

    I voted for Topinka as a hard core dem (competency over politics). She was the only R I voted for. West side turnout seems a bit light.


  32. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:58 pm:

    Cook County is coming out in a big way Jeff. They might not all be ‘alive’ but they are certainly showing up for the dems. My prediction is that the media hype is all wrong. R’s might win a few seats in the house, but there won’t be a takeover. Even though I don’t love Alexi, I’m proud to say that my next Senator won’t be a wishy washy lying clown.


  33. - 42nd Ward - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 1:58 pm:

    Don’t have complete details yet. Reports came first hand from a GOP countywide candidate who is on the scene. Chicago turnout looks heavy.


  34. - siriusly - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:06 pm:

    The yard signs are scary!!! Nice job.

    I thought turnout was heavy where I was working this morning until I learned about local referendum which may explain it in part.

    Turnout reports are up and down and not consistent. Just like the polling reports have been all season.


  35. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:07 pm:

    I was talking about the west side of springpatch


  36. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:08 pm:

    ===Most midterms run in the mid 40’s historically===

    Chicago turnout four years ago was 49.25 percent. The state as a whole averaged 41.4 percent.

    The city’s turnout in 2002 was 53.1 percent. Statewide average was 40.2 percent.

    And, yes, black voters turn out strongly.


  37. - Wally - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:08 pm:

    So Jimbo, by your comment, I presume you voted 3rd party???


  38. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:12 pm:

    COHEN all the way! LOL


  39. - BigCaesar - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:12 pm:

    There are a LOT of union guys in Elgin passing out literature for Rep. Farnham.


  40. - Wally - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:15 pm:

    Jimbo, if you are talking about the west side and southwest side of Springfield, there will be a heavy turnout all day and the Dems will get a major beatdown in that area. And, I am being kind when I say major.


  41. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:20 pm:

    I was talking strictly westside, follingbrook. Unless these geezers are going to eat dinner at 7, I think you’re mistaken.


  42. - Wally - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:22 pm:

    Wait for the returns, it will be brutal for the Dems on the west and southwest side and in Sangamon County.


  43. - wndycty - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:22 pm:

    Roe Conn just happens to have audio of what he and WLS-AM are alleging as vote fraud in a Black precinct, he just played the audio and seemed upset when Chuck Goudie took a much ado about nothing approach.

    Not only is right and its media allies calling it for Republicans they want to spread the meme that Democrats are trying to steal it. WOW


  44. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:23 pm:

    Wally, that’ll mean almost squat in the grand scheme. Let’s not get into arguments over nothing.


  45. - Wally - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:25 pm:

    Yeah, I know.


  46. - Logical Thinker - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:26 pm:

    Rich,

    If the turnout was 49.5% in the city 4 years ago, wouldn’t the Dems need a higher turnout than that if the numbers from downstate exceed 45-50%?

    I think if turnout in the city is the same as 4 years ago, it will be complete wipeout for the Dems.


  47. - Original Rambler - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:26 pm:

    Far NW Chicago, 250 out of 700+ at 2:00. Uneventful.


  48. - jimbo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:31 pm:

    New convo… How about those Blues?


  49. - enn - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:36 pm:

    ===The Chicago Board of Elections traditionally gives turnout projections during the day, so look to see what they report.===

    Do these get published anywhere that we can see them?


  50. - Anonymous ZZZ - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:39 pm:

    enn, I was looking for them too and couldn’t find them.

    I did see on the Trib’s website, though, that the executive director of the State Board of Elections was projecting turnout of about 52 or 53% in Chicago and Cook County.


  51. - Jo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:39 pm:

    If the turnout was 49.5% in the city 4 years ago, wouldn’t the Dems need a higher turnout than that if the numbers from downstate exceed 45-50%?

    No


  52. - Downstater - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:43 pm:

    South Central Illinois County - Clerks office reports many more calls related to voter confusion as to where to vote. Indicates many more first time or “newer” voters than ever before.


  53. - sing me something new - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:50 pm:

    Tribune predicts cook county will be about 53%. Also reports Sangamon will be higher than normal. Any idea how government workers will skew the traditional southern illinois republican lean?


  54. - Jo - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:55 pm:

    I, too, am looking for insight on the effect of AFSCME in Springfield.


  55. - Tom Joad - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:57 pm:

    The Springfield area will have a large early turnout becouse the state employees have the day off. Those turnout numbers can’t be compared to other counties numbers where the voters have to work today.


  56. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 2:58 pm:

    Up north here, the weather is unbelievable. A perfect Fall Day.

    The sun’s shining, the kids are out at recess, some color in the trees, leaves blowing — ain’t it good to be alive and to be in Illinois?


  57. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 3:00 pm:

    Let’s take the precinct reports to our fresh post. Thanks.


  58. - anon 62707 - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 3:01 pm:

    Voted in Sangamon County Capital 30 precinct at about 1:45pm. I was #802 (wife was #801). There were two precincts at our location (think the other was Capital 51). Every booth was in use and immediately taken by another voter. No one in line when I came in, 3-4 waiting for a booth when I left. Only signs outside were for Brady, no one outside. No problems, one person spoiled their ballot and problem was handled immediately.

    Drove past a polling place on the east side of Springfield afterwards going to the post office: more signs there, several were for the 1% sales tax for education facilities question.

    Wife said the crowd at our polling place was the largest since they last had the fish fry!


  59. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 3:02 pm:

    Again, let’s take the precinct reports to our fresh post. Thanks.


  60. - Excessively Rabid - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 3:03 pm:

    @SMSN: Southern Illinois is traditionally Democratic. Central Illinois, and northern Illinois outside the metro area, is for the most part traditionally Republican. But if you’re asking how public employees and retirees will vote in the governor’s race, I’ve talked to a surprising number who planned to vote for Quinn. Don’t know what that’s worth because the folks I know are dems who were just looking for an excuse not to vote for any Republican ever, even if the alternative is Quinn. Nevertheless, I think Brady has been a bad enough candidate to risk losing an election it was almost impossible to lose.


  61. - COPN - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 3:09 pm:

    Gave a shout out of 1,000+ at noon for a Tinley Park church with six precincts. (McCarthy vs Junkas statehouse race). Did my best to break it down based on registered voter numbers I found…comes out to 20% by noon.

    …next count in an hour.


  62. - Joe Blow - Tuesday, Nov 2, 10 @ 4:08 pm:

    I drove by a precinct near a Chicago Logan Square location and 5-7 unions guys were standing right outside the door holding sticks with campaign signs staring at everyone walking in. Reminded me of the Black Panthers in Philly a couple years ago. They were no where near the minimum distance they needed to be. They were right on the steps!!


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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