Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Voter registration spikes on deadline day

BOB STEPHENS Updated: October 10, 2012 at 12:00 am

Voter registration in El Paso County is up 11 percent from the 2008 Presidential election, largely due to registration being available online, said County Clerk & Recorder Wayne Williams.

“You used to have to go somewhere to register and now you don’t,” Williams said. “It is much easier to register now when you can do it from the comfort of your own home. And it made everything much more efficient. The clerk’s office didn’t have lines out the door like they did in 2008. Very few people had to wait in line this year.”

As of Wednesday afternoon there were 421,579 registered voters in the county, although election manager Liz Olson said that number will continue to grow as more are processed.

The deadline to register was midnight Tuesday. Of the 9,209 voters who registed in the county Tuesday, 3,991 did it online at www.govotecolorado.com and 3,708 forms were turned in by voter registration drives. Another 1,021 came in the mail. Williams said he received the last email registration at 11:21 p.m.

In the last five weeks, 64,329 registered with 26,638 doing it online. Olson said Colorado began allowing online registration in 2010.

El Paso County’s population has increased approximately 44,000 since 2008, according to the Colorado Department of Local Affairs website.

Williams said the increase of 46,997 registered voters from 2008 “is a significant increase. There are a couple of other reasons. Colorado’s pivotal role in the Presidential election is one. And there have been a number of media campaigns from our office and the Secretary of State’s office to register more voters. The ease of registering online is important and it’s the first time we’ve taken registration up till midnight.”

There are 176,342 registered Republicans (42 percent of the total) in the county plus 146,815 unaffiliated voters (35 percent), 93,681 Democrats (22 percent) and 4,741 spread among Libertarians (approximately 2,800), Green Party (about 1,000) and American Constitution Party (about 1,000).

The election is Nov. 6. Mail ballots go out Monday while four early voting sites are open Oct. 22-Nov. 2, except for Oct. 28. Early voting sites are the Clerk & Recorder’s main office at Citizens Service Center, 1675 W. Garden of the Gods Road; Southeast Branch, southeast corner of Powers Boulevard and Airport Road; Chapel Hills Mall (lower level, former DMV office); and Citadel Mall (southwest entrance).

Contact Bob Stephens: 636-0276 Twitter @bobgstephens

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