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2016 Election Facts and Figures

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A few facts and figures about Election Day in Comal County now that all the votes have been counted:

* 62,909 people voted, the most ever in Comal County history. The 11,305-voter increase from 2012 is also the biggest the county’s ever seen.

* Of course, the county is the seventh-fastest-growing in the country and voter registration surged, so that big increase only translated into a 2.1-percent bump in turnout, to 68.1 percent, better than any year since 1992, but still well short of that year’s record 79.2 percent turnout.

* With early voting numbers up 30 percent but overall turnout only up two percent, it’s clear much of that was Election Day voters deciding to vote early instead, resulting in a big increase in early voting as a percentage of total ballots cast. In 2012, 67.5 percent of ballots were cast early. This year, 80.2 percent were.

* On the presidential side, Comal County voted for a Republican for the 13th consecutive election, dating all the way back to 1968, although with the lowest percentage since 1996, when Ross Perot took a significant number of votes.

Source: Comal County’s Facebook page.

Nov. 9

Final vote totals from Comal County:

Sheriff:
Mark Reynolds, 48,913 (80.5%)
Fred Riter, 11,882 (19.6%)

President:
Donald Trump, 44,996 (72.7%)
Hillary Clinton, 14,166 (22.9%)
Gary Johnson, 2,062 (3.3%)

Nov. 7 Update from Comal County:

Final early voting totals: 4,107 people came out on Friday, for a grand two-week total of 45,612 in-person early voters, 30-percent higher than in 2012. An additional 4,862 people returned their mail-in ballots, bringing the total number of voters thus far to 50,474 – or just 1,400 fewer than turned out in all of 2012.

If you’re one of the 45 percent of registered Comal County voters who hasn’t cast a ballot yet, tomorrow is your day! We’ll have more information later about Election Day voting, but your local polling place will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Nov. 3 Update from Comal County:

Yesterday saw continued decline in the number of people coming out to the polls – but at a steady clip of about 1,000 more people per day than in 2012. As a result, yesterday’s turnout was nearly 50-percent higher than the same day four years ago.

Overall, 38,361 people have cast ballots thus far. Combined with the 4,627 mail-in ballots we’ve received, that’s a total of more than 42,000 voters – or 46 percent of all registered voters. Keep up the good work, Comal County! Early voting is open until 7 p.m. today and from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. tomorrow.

Nov. 2 Update from Comal County:

It’s official: With three days still to go, the total number of early voters this year has topped the total from 2012.

Yesterday, 3,692 people cast ballots, bringing Comal County’s overall total to 35,090; according to the daily reports from 2012, 35,010 people voted early when it was all said and done. Mail-in ballots have also surpassed the 2012 total; nearly 1,000 more mail-in ballots have been received thus far in 2016 than were received in all of 2012, and there are still about 1,300 requested ballots that haven’t been received yet.

A reminder: Early voting ends in Garden Ridge at 4 p.m. today; polls are open until 7 p.m. at the other three locations (Bulverde Spring Branch Library, WORD office in Sattler and the Elections Office), and they will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. tomorrow and Friday at all four locations.

Nov. 1 Update from Comal County:

Early voting is following the same pattern as 2012, but with consistently 500-1,000 more voters each day. Yesterday saw 3,807 voters go to the polls – the smallest non-Sunday number so far, but still more than in any single day of the 2012 election. Overall, 31,398 people have voted early.

Remember: early voting ends Friday, and polls will be open on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 28, marked Comal County’s slowest day of early voting so far, with 4,191 residents casting their ballots for the Nov. 8 election.

Still, the turnout outpaced every early voting day from 2012, according to a Friday morning post on Comal County’s Facebook page.

Overall, 17,595 people have voted early in Comal County, a 34.5-percent increase from four years ago and already more than half of the 2012 total of 35,010.

The four early voting polling centers – the Elections Office in New Braunfels, Garden Ridge City Hall, Bulverde Spring Branch Library and the WORD offices in Sattler – will be open until 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28, then open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29 and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 30.

Next week, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.  Monday, Oct. 31 through Friday, Nov. 4 (except in Garden Ridge, which will close at 4 p.m. on Wednesday).

Day 3

Comal County voters set a new record Wednesday, Oct. 26, topping 4,500 votes for the first time ever and toppling the old mark, which stood for a whole 48 hours.

2016 is far well outstripping 2012. Overall, 13,404 people have voted early thus far, more than 36 percent higher than the turnout at this point in 2012.

Day 2

Comal County says 4,356 area residents showed up at the polls to early vote on Tuesday, Oct. 25 — “Day 2” — a slight decline from Monday’s record turnout on “Day 1.”

However, voter turnout is up more than 25 percent from 2012. Overall, 8,845 people have voted early in Comal County so far in 2016.

Day 1

On the first day of early voting in 2012, 3,325 people cast a ballot. This year? 4,489,  a 35 percent increase!

“Of course, population and voter registrations have gone up, but they haven’t gone up that much. Clearly, you all are very interested in this election,” Comal County posted on its Facebook page.

Voting rules

Comal County reminds residents who plan on getting out there and voting, either early or on Election Day, to remember:

  1. “You do NOT need a photo ID to vote. If you have one, bring it, as it will make the process easier, but if you don’t have one of the state-approved forms of photo identification, you can bring a state-approved form of non-photo ID (such as a current utility bill or your voter registration card), sign an affidavit and cast a ballot. The lists of approved identification can be found here: https://www.texastribune.org/…/texplainer-what-id-do-i-nee…/.”
  2. “You do not have a First Amendment right to electioneer in the polling place. State law forbids it, and poll workers will ask you to remove your hat or button, turn your shirt inside out, or stop telling everyone around you how great your candidate is if you are within 100 feet of the polling place. You can wear a color that might be affiliated with one candidate or party, but “Make America Great Again” hats, “Nasty Woman” shirts and other election paraphernalia, even if it doesn’t explicitly mention a particular candidate, are not allowed.”
  3. “Please do not take ballot selfies or use a camera or electronic recording device for any other purpose. State law forbids them within 100 feet of a polling place.”
  4. “Requests for a mail-in ballot are due in the Elections Office no later than 5 p.m Friday. At this point, you are probably better off faxing your request to 830-608-2013 or emailing it to jaquac@co.comal.tx.us than risking it arriving Saturday or Monday via snail mail. Even if it’s postmarked by Friday, it will not be accepted if it arrives later.”
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