The California polls are closed. Elections officials described a peaceful and efficient day Tuesday in the Bay Area’s nine counties. Very few counties reported long lines or any real problems at polling places.
Turnout for in-person voting was down Tuesday, thanks to the massive push for early and mail-in voting due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The night before Election Day, more than 2.7 million Bay Area voters had already cast ballots. Statewide, more than 11.2 million of California’s more than 21 million registered voters had already voted. Nationwide, the number exceeded 100 million by Monday evening — almost 70 percent of the 136.5 million people who voted in 2016.
Santa Clara County reported a running total of 661,000 ballots received by mid-afternoon on Election Day. “No long lines; our office has had a manageable line,” said Evelyn Mendez, the county’s public and legislative affairs manager. Alameda County reported Monday about 581,445 people cast votes before Election Day, which is 60.2 percent of its registered voters. Going into Election Day, Contra Costa County had already received 420,000 ballots. San Francisco ended up receiving 326,786 early and mail-in ballots before Election Day. Solano County had reported receiving 135,969 total ballots by midday Tuesday.
Officials said voters responded to calls for early voting amid speculation it could take days or even weeks beyond Election Day to finalize results for some races.
Marin County reported more than 130,000 of its 175,220 registered voters sent in ballots by Monday. Sonoma County processed more than 203,000 ballots by Monday, which accounts for 67 percent of its registered voters. San Mateo County received 289,146 ballots by the day before Election Day. Napa County reported receiving 54,003 votes by 4 p.m. Monday.
Ballots had to be postmarked Election Day and need to be received by county elections offices no later than 17 days after Election Day.