Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Write-in votes (from City Clerk)


Holaday (write-in) - 147

Shanley (write-in) - 83

Mayor - 24 (names not specified)

Charter Commission - 48 (names not specified)

School Committee - 32 (names not specified)

Ward races - 52 total
Ward 1 - 1
Ward 2 - 13
Ward 3 -2
Ward 4 -22
Ward 5 - 5
Ward 6 - 9

Official results on the city website here. Thanks to Mary Baker Eaton of the The Newburyport Blog for pointing me to the page.


Dick Monahan said...

Looking at the breakout at

- Who would take the trouble to go vote and then not cast a vote for Mayor? 86 people did that.

- Is the population of Ward 1 much lower than the others, or did more of them stay home?

- It's good for the perceived legitimacy of the Charter Commission that the Yes votes totaled more than 50% of the total voters.

- If all the commission member votes came from the Yes voters, the average was 6.8 selection per voter, which suggests a lot of "bulleting". I think the fact that it was mostly the known names that won supports that assumption.

Dick Monahan said...

How do the votes get counted? Do those scanners into which we insert our ballots do the counting on the fly, or is there some other device involved?

What checks are performed in the polling stations before the totals are called in to City Hall?

What auditing is done by City Hall?

Gillian Swart said...

Good observations and questions, Dick. I should know the process (especially since 2 yrs. ago I wrote a story about it), but right now all I can say is that the clerk was reading results from what he called a "tape" that was a printout from a machine. I can't do a full investigation right now because it's deadline day for the Current.

Tom Salemi said...

The scanners produce the tapes on site. That's why the mayoral campaigns had the results before the folks in city hall, they had volunteers at each site.

The tapes are then brought to city hall for some kind of confirmation.

Gillian Swart said...

Thanks, Tom. I was lurking around the Clerk's office a while ago (waiting for some info from the mayor's office) so I asked the asst. clerk.

The voting machine(s) tallies the vote. I didn't ask this, but I assume there's some central CPU on-site because a tape is produced at the end of the voting day.

The tape is sent to the Clerk's Office. The asst. clerk puts the data into a spreadsheet. She also scans into what she called "the state machine" every person who voted, based on the sign-in sheets sent from the wards(there's a bar code that goes w/each name).

She can then check the spreadsheet totals against who voted (she can't tell who voted for who, of course, only that the person voted).

Only after all that is done can the clerk's office certify the results. This is for a local election. For the senate race upcoming and the presidential election last year, the state has the certify the results.

Hope that helps!

Bruce Menin said...

you've made some very astute observations.

i spent a little time today looking at the charter votes would offer a a few thoughts to consider. And btw, the total vote summaries posted in the daily news are wrong;
go to the city website for the accurate ones.

- with bailey, brown and cole all receiving high votes, and ms. bailey not yet a "known" figure, despite her considerable qualities as a candidate, I wonder if there wasn't a lot of alphabetical voting... the first few on the list. Then again, bruce vogel's totals were very impressive for someone so far down the ballot, so certainly name recognition is at work here.

-both cole and i finished well off our previous city-wide totals in SC elections; this was coles third (?) city-wide election, and my fourth

-i was really impressed with the low number of blank ballots that were handed in for the charter question; compare that to the last debt exclusion vote, which had a very high number of people handing in blanks

if the charter commission could be considered "a stepping stone" to another office some point down the road, bailey, vogel, and cole should be pretty happy, overall. with her vote total, Bailey would have won the fifth at large seat on the City Council- Vogel would've needed about sixty votes, cole about eighty. pretty good, if that's a "base."

Amazed said...

Bruce --
Do you favor charter commission members getting free moorings too?

Bruce Menin said...

no. we are elected officials, and i have always felt that elected officials shouldn't get anything for free. water meters included.

if you are referring to the article about our SC conversation the other night as we try to explore possible ways to compensate a high quality applicant for superintendent without costing the city any tax dollars we might not have to spend otherwise, i would say this.

if it meant the person would take the job, and it didn't cost us any additional money, I would call Karp and CVS and try to get them to donate a year's worth of toilet paper.

sorry to get a little snippy. i am not a big fan of comments that don't attach to a person's name, and after nine years of cutting school budgets, i would hope that the community would encourage us to find ways to get quality people to work here and not spend additional dollars if we can find reasonable offsets.

Gillian Swart said...

And let's not forget the Republican factor.

Brown is a fairly prominent Republican and the father of a very prominent Republican

On the Council side, Steve Hutcheson declared himself a Republican several months ago. Remember I posted about it being an astute political move on his part to join the new Republican Committee? He didn't even have any campaign signs! (Although he did tell me in a 2007 interview that he did not like them and considered them litter.)

And remember someone asking on here what party affiliation the charter commission candidates had?

I don't know Vogel's party affiliation, or even if he has one, but it would be really interesting to all this speculation, if it turned out he's also a Republican.