WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - As of 6 p.m., more than 25,000 people went to the polls to vote in-person in St. Lawrence County and more than 6,500 in Lewis County. There were more than 21,000 in Jefferson County as of 8 p.m.
St. Lawrence County
Voter turnout in St. Lawrence County is being described as steady as 25,667 people went in-person to the polls as of 6 p.m. Board of Elections officials said 5,017 people voted early and they’ve received 8,596 absentee ballots so far.
The Election Day in-person vote of 21,546, combined with the vote before Election Day in Jefferson County (mail-in and early votes) of 11,993, means that at least 33,479 people have cast their vote in Jefferson County so far.
The last time we picked a president in 2016, 38,613 people cast ballots in Jefferson County.
As for who’s voting in Jefferson County - far more Republicans than Democrats voted Tuesday. The count, as of 8 p.m., was 10,605 Republicans, 5,044 Democrats and 4,057 not affiliated with either party.
Tuesday’s vote has enabled Republicans, so far, to more than offset any advantage Democrats had in early voting. When you add up the number of Republicans voting today, the number who voted early and the number who submitted mail-ins, you get 12,102. Do the same thing for Democrats and you get 8,697.
Officials at the Lewis County Board of Elections reported 6,538 people had voted in-person as of 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Add that to the 2,818 early votes and the 1,868 absentee ballots received, and you get a total of 10,591 people voting.
You have until 9 p.m. to cast your ballot.
Reporter Emily Griffin was live from Stone Presbyterian Church in Watertown during 7 News at Noon to get an on-the-ground perspective of voter turnout.
Here’s her report:
It’s been a pretty steady stream of voters so far and poll workers say there’s a lot more enthusiasm this year.
There have been lines out the door at Stone Presbyterian Church.
Election workers say that voters had gathered outside before polls opened, eager to cast their ballots.
To accommodate the number of people passing through there’s a designated cleaner to wipe down surfaces and disinfect pens between votes.
Poll workers say it seems there are a lot more new voters this year.
“I did notice that I saw some young people, some of the questions they were asking the poll workers it seemed like they were first-time voters or voters who haven’t voted in a long time,” poll worker Jeanne Barker said.
“I think there’s a lot of controversy this year and people I think have been moved to get up and get out and make the effort to vote so that they have the opportunity to express who they want as their president and their representatives,” voter Joanne Nugent said.
Poll workers were expecting it to remain busy all day and they say they’re ready for it.
“We had a better than expected early voter turnout. We’ve had a great response to our absentee and now people are really coming to the polls. They realize how important this is and we’re seeing it in the numbers,” said Jefferson County Board of Elections Republican Commissioner Jude Seymour.
Across Jefferson County there have been very few complications with voting, only at the Adam Center Fire Department poll site was there a slight snag: one of the machines wasn’t working properly but workers were able to replace it with an emergency voting machine within a few minutes.
But, will we know the true results Tuesday night?
“Take every result tonight with a grain of salt,” said Seymour. “I think that a lot of people might see results that are not reflective of the final results. So if you see a Republican candidate ahead tonight and it’s not a significant margin, just remember there’s a lot of registered Democrats who have put in absentee votes that haven’t been counted yet. So anyone who declares victory tonight in a close race would be premature to do so.”
We’ll cover results at 10 p.m. on WNYF Fox 28 and at 11 p.m. on WWNY Channel 7.
CBS’s coverage starts at 7 p.m. on WWNY and the 7 News team will have local updates twice an hour.
You can also find up-to-date information on this website.