KING COUNTY, Wash. - King County Elections is calling the weekend “record breaking” after collecting tens of thousands of ballots from drop boxes.
On Saturday, election workers collected about 60,000 ballots, and another 30,000 were expected to be picked up on Sunday.
“Our previous record for the first five days of the voting period was 16,000 ballots for drop boxes,” said Kendall Hodson, King County Elections Chief of Staff. “The earlier voters return their ballots, the more results we’re going to be able to post on Election Night, which is what everyone’s really looking for.”
Hodson told Q13 News 600 temporary staff were hired this election season. Election workers will begin processing ballots on Monday.
The first Monday after ballots are sent out is also when they see a high number of ballots returned by mail.
“I was just like, 'I got to get this in as soon as possible to make sure that it’s counted and goes through,'” said Sarah Stephens at the Seattle Central drop box.
“This is my first year voting and I’m super excited to do it. With everything that’s been going on it’s just really important to get my ballot in as soon as I can,” said Monica Foley at the West Seattle Junction drop box.
“I want to do my research, get my ballot, definitely going to put it in the ballot box instead of doing it via mail. I trust USPS but there’s been enough fud about it to make me concerned,” said Jennifer Stevens in King County.
Voters were seen taking selfies and posing for pictures before dropping their ballots in.
“I think the hardest part for me with vote by mail elections is you lose that sense of community and tradition and ceremony that we used to have at polling places, so I think that people are finding new traditions and new ceremonies to have with their families and friends and sharing it on social media so it’s a good positive thing,” said Kim Wyman, Secretary of State.
Wyman is predicting a 90 percent voter turnout this season with 5 million ballots sent out by November 3.
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