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Washoe early voting off to a busy start


Eager voters converged on libraries, stores and even Lawlor Events Center Saturday, Oct. 17, to cast their votes or to drop off their mail-in or absentee ballots. Democrat and Republican candidates from throughout the state battled each other for space in the media and the public’s attention to keep the focus on their messages and issues.

It was a day that many have waited years for–the beginning of the end of the 2020 election.

Nevada Democrats came out first with a full cast of party heavyweights up and down the state. Lt. Governor Kate Marshall, Nevada Senator Julia Ratti and Washoe County Dems Chair Sarah Mahler all welcomed voters at the Sparks Library early voting location. Congressional District 2 candidate Patricia Ackerman marched to the polls with University of Nevada, Reno Young Democrats. And Gov. Steve Sisolak made remarks at the Boulevard Mall after he and his family dropped off their ballots.

Not to be outdone, the Nevada Republican Party and the Trump Victory Campaign hosted a Saturday morning get out the vote event with Congressman Mark Amodei and former Nevada Attorney General and Trump campaign co-chair Adam Laxalt. Reports had about 40-50 attendees at the morning rally in Reno.

No Nevada election would be complete without talking about one of the keys to Democratic success and a giant political player in grassroots campaigns: the Culinary Union. The group issued a statement on their programs and contributions to the 2020 election so far. 

“The Culinary Union’s political program for the 2020 General Election, which is responsive to the COVID-19 global pandemic, began on Aug. 1, 2020 and is (and will continue to be) the largest in the state,” union officials said in a statement. “The battle-tested political program has over 350 hospitality workers canvassing and making phone calls to voters in Reno and Las Vegas. Since Aug. 1, canvassers have been in the streets knocking on doors, talking to voters, and getting out the vote for Biden/Harris. The Culinary Union is committed to defeating Trump on Election Day in Nevada.”  

As the numbers of this historic day one of in-person early voting are tabulated, this much is known: this will likely be a record setting election in Washoe County. Based on the Washoe County Registrar of Voters reported numbers of mail-in and absentee ballots returned, it appears that voter participation is already high. 

In 2018, the general election brought out  188,824 (70.13%) registered voters. In 2016 turnout was 210,287 (79.41%). And in the famous 2014 red wave, the participation was 116,335 (51.63%).

Washoe County Registrar Report: https://www.washoecounty.us/voters/elections/20_gen_ab_ev_reports.php

As of Oct. 18, 2020: 

  • Registered Democrats – 105,880
  • Registered Republicans – 106,468
  • Registered Nonpartisan – 68,015
  • Registered as Other – 20,898
  • Total registered voters – 301,261

Mail-In/Absentee Cumulative Turnout: 

  • Democratic – 73,072
  • Republican – 31,594
  • Nonpartisan – 29,112
  • Total – 133,788 (44.41%) of electorate 
Don Dike Anukam
Don Dike Anukam
Don Dike-Anukam is a Reno native attending college in northern Nevada. He has been involved in activist politics for 15 years on and off, and has been involved in multiple campaigns in multiple positions in that time. He also was a college radio political, news, and talk-show host covering a range of stories from hostage standoffs, fires, interviews, and public speeches.




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