At 5:40 p.m. this afternoon the Alameda County Registrar posted additional votes on Measure H. The ‘yes’ total is now 10,225, for 66.37 percent of the vote. It’s creeping up!
Today’s results include about three-quarters of the absentee ballots that people walked into the polls on election day. Tomorrow, says County Registrar Spokesperson Guy Ashley, we should see a count that includes all the absentee ballots. And some time next week, a smaller number of provisional ballots, which have to be individually verified, will be posted. “We have more than half of our voters voting absentee now,” said Ashley. “Eight years ago it was under 10 percent. It’s really changed the way elections are counted.”
Lots of people have been running numbers, trying to guess just how this election will finally turn out. The general concept is that the more outstanding votes there are the better chance H has of passing. Problem is, of course, no one knows how many of the remaining county votes are from the City of Alameda. And, though we can make educated guesses, no one knows just what percentage of those votes are ‘yes.’ For some more details and analysis, go visit Rob Siltanen over at School 94501/94502.
[Ed. note: More details, too, over at Michele Ellson's The Island. And, also, for your further edification, the East Bay Express has a bit on Alameda's parcel tax vote.]
If you’re a compulsive checker, you can keep looking at the Measure H vote totals at the Alameda county registrar’s site. As of 9 a.m. Thursday morning there are 9010 ‘yes’ and 4676 ‘no’ votes: that’s 65.83 percent ‘yes’…just shy, of course, of the required two-thirds. (While the registrar’s site says that 100 percent of the votes have been reported, that’s actually not the case: there are still some number of outstanding votes.) The official word last night from the Yes on H campaign, via Andy Currid, was this:
We’ve confirmed with the registrar of voters that more ballots remain to be counted. These are absentee (vote-by-mail) ballots that were turned in at polling places yesterday, and provisional ballots that were cast at the polls yesterday. As of this evening, the county hasn’t yet reported how many uncounted ballots there are, but we hope to know by the end of this week…So there is still optimism Measure H could pass. It will all depend on how many votes remain to be counted, and how heavily those votes skew toward Yes on H.
I am hearing that the Alameda County Registrar will release the remaining vote totals on Friday [ed note: others are saying it could be as early as tomorrow]. What we’re talking about are provisional ballots—like people who moved and voted at a precinct that didn’t have their name on the list. Or those people who had absentee ballots and walked them into their polling places yesterday. Those election-day absentee ballots and provisional votes have not yet been counted. They are important because people are guesstimating (based on the way the vote looked yesterday, with already-counted election day totals running about 72 percent in favor of Measure H) how many more voters Measure H needs to pull up over that two-thirds threshold. (The absentee votes mailed in before election day had a lower percentage of ‘yes’ votes, about 62 percent.) Basically, the more votes the better—assuming that, like the other election day votes, the provisional and absentee votes hand delivered to the polling places on election day are running overwhelmingly in support of Measure H.
Here’s official comment from Ron Mooney from the Measure H campaign:
We are grateful to the thousands of Alamedans who voted yesterday. As of today, Measure H received more than 65% ‘yes’ votes. In most races, this would be a landslide. Unfortunately, a parcel tax election still requires a 2/3 majority to pass. While we hoped to exceed the requirement last night, as of today, ballots are still being counted. Yes on H remains optimistic that the final results will meet the 2/3 requirement. We extend our deep gratitude to the hundreds of volunteers who worked to save Alameda schools from the State budget crisis and continue to work to Keep Alameda Schools Excellent!
My research assistant—hat tip, JDS!—noticed that one of the Alameda precincts on the County Registrar of Voters map (you need to click on the precinct map link in the top right corner and zoom in), number 301400 over by Otis Elementary, was still light green (dark green means results in). So I called the registrar to find out what that means. The clerk there said, “They’re still unofficial votes, so they’re still going to be uploading. It’ll probably show something else by the end of the day. It could be the touch spring cartridge is not uploading.” It sounds like it isn’t yet clear if the regular votes (not provisional or absentee) from 301400 had been counted or not: whether it’s a problem with the map changing color or with the actual uploading of votes.* She also said there’s still a lot of work to do, that the results are far from set. “You’re not going to know the results for 28 days,” she told me. “We still have to check all the provisionals and absentees.” It’s too early, also, to get a count on the number of provisional ballots. The more the better, though, because the percentage of ‘yes’ votes from those who voted yesterday was running about 72 percent, according to Andy Currid of KASE. Whereas the absentee ballots that were sent in early (those first returns you saw last night) were running about 62 percent ‘yes.’ “It’s way to early to say we’ve lost,” said Currid. “But if that’s where it ends up we’re going to be starting the school year four million in the hole.” In conclusion? I think there’s still a little bit of hope out there.
*As of 11 a.m. today, the precinct has gone dark green with no change in vote totals.
It looks like Measure H is going down in defeat by a bit over a 100 votes. There is some hope, by way of Mike McMahon, that if there are enough provisional votes— something like 1,700 (all those absentee votes handed in yesterday are in this category), then it might just bring the numbers up enough to squeak out a win. The direct link to the Alameda County registrar of voters where you can view returns is here.
When the absentee votes appeared, some time around 9 p.m., it looked a little bleak: absentee ‘yes’ votes were at 61.88 percent. (Measure H needs, as you likely remember, two thirds of the vote to pass: 66.66 percent.) But now, at 11:40 pm, with 15 (of 51) precincts reporting the ‘yes’ percentage is up above 63 percent. WAIT! It just went up again: we’re now at 27 precincts and 64.74 percent ‘yes’ votes. You can always find the most updated Measure H results here.
Also check out Michele Ellson’s The Island for more details on election results, particularly the vote analysis comment posted by former city councilmember Tony Daysog.
[Ed. note 6:32 a.m: visit Mike McMahon's site for a chart of the votes and some info on the counting of the provisional ballots. And Michele Ellson's got more at The Island, too. Don't forget to visit Rob Siltanen at School 94501/94502, where he's made a calculation about the number of votes H appears to have failed by.]
[Ed. note 6:56 a.m: Also go visit Lauren Do for a bit of macro perspective on the loss---y'know, why can we pass a constitutional amendment with a simple majority but we need two thirds to pass a small school tax?]
You can find key election results on this customized Alameda County registrar of voters page starting this evening, some time after the polls close at 8 p.m. It’s just a few hours from the time to watch and wait. Cheers to all the hard work and high ideals!
I was over at Measure H headquarters this morning making phone calls and learning about my volunteer assignment as a poll watcher.
Today, my husband and I will be helping out our precinct captain, Anne Cevallos. We’ll be noting ‘yes’ voters who’ve already cast their ballots and giving reminders to those who haven’t gone over to the polls yet.
And, please remember, on the Democratic ballot Measure H is all alone on the back! Tricky, no? Also, it’s only regular voters who the campaign was able to contact who make the poll watching list volunteers are working with. So, if you’re not a regular voter and/or the campaign somehow didn’t reach you, let this serve as your reminder: go vote.
Pictured above are Andy and Chantal Currid. I don’t actually know what Andy’s official title for the Measure H campaign is—does he have one?—but he’s done buckets and buckets of work over the past months for Measure H. And, if you’ve been involved at all, you know that he’s very often up into the wee hours sending emails about what’s been done and what needs to be done. Chantal is no slouch either, helping out in all sorts of ways, including recruiting for phone banking and providing behind-the-scenes technical support.
Also pictured is part of the chart which volunteers will be updating throughout the day as precinct workers call in, reporting vote totals in their areas. Happy election day! And happy democracy! Be a part of it.
Today’s print column, “Paying the price to have good schools,” is up online. If you’ve somehow missed that today is election day, and Measure H, the parcel tax to support our town’s schools in on the ballot, go read it now. You can find all Alameda Journal articles online here.
Past “Life on the Island” columns
May 27, 2008: A civil rights issue in our time
May 20, 2008: What’s cooking in the hot weather?
May 12, 2008: When a man needs a cave
May 5, 2008: Enjoying that small-town feel
April 28, 2008: Support of tax teaches lesson
April 21, 2008: New garage can be a good habit
April 14, 2008: When the earth shakes, duck
April 7, 2008: Snails, ants, lice and light brown apple moths
Morning! Today is election day. You can find your polling place here. And you can read the Alameda Journal’s editorial in support of Measure H here. And here’s more of the latest on Measure H. Go vote yes for a modest tax for our town’s schools. Remember, it needs two thirds of the vote to pass, so every vote counts.