Thursday, 22 February 2024

Primary election turnout down as local, state, federal races take shape

LAKE COUNTY – Although there were local, state and federal offices on the ballot on Tuesday, Lake County voters didn't turn out in big numbers for the second of three trips to the polls many will take this year.


The Lake County Registrar of Voters reported that 8,366 ballots were cast in the June 3 primary, only a 25.2 percent turnout from among the 33,143 registered voters countywide. That's compared to the 47.3-percent turnout reported on Super Tuesday, Feb. 5.


Total ballots included 4,844 absentees (14.6 percent) and 3,522 precinct ballots (10.6 percent), according to records from Tuesday, which still have to be officially certified by Registrar of Voters Diane Fridley and her election staff.


In the race for the House of Representatives seat representing Congressional District 1, incumbent Congressman Mike Thompson handily won against fellow Democrat Mitch Clogg, gaining 86.4 percent of the votes to Clogg's 13.2 percent, with 15 write-in candidates accounting for 0.3 percent of the vote.


In the Republican race for the Congressional District 1 seat, Zane Starkewolf defeated Douglas Pharr, 55.2 percent to 43.6 percent, besides 1.1 percent of the vote going to 27 writes-ins. Carol Wolman was the only candidate on the Green Party ticket for the seat in Congress, with 95.8 percent of the vote for her party, plus two write-ins, which accounted for 4.2 percent of the vote.


State Assembly hopeful Wes Chesbro, facing no challenger from the Democratic Party, received 98.8 percent of the vote,or 4,066 ballots cast in his favor, with 1.2 percent devoted to write-ins. Republican Jim Pell, also running unopposed on his party ticket for the District 1 State Assembly seat, took 98.3 percent of the vote, or 2,158 ballots. Thirty-eight write-ins gained 1.7 percent of the Republican vote.


As in February, decisions by local voters mirrored state results with respect to the battling eminent domain measures. Proposition 99 won statewide and in Lake County as well, garnering a 64-percent approval locally while Proposition 98 was defeated with a 57-percent “no” vote.


Measure A, a special tax proposed in the Butler-Keys Community Services District, passed with 80 percent of the vote, according to vote tallies.


Among local partisan central committees, no candidates filed in Republican Central Committee districts 1, 2 and 5, where write-ins took 100 percent of the vote in each district. In District 3, there were a total of five seats available, but the only stated candidates were Penny Lunt, who took 49.6 percent of the vote, and Robert Gene Lanfranco II, with 49.2 percent, with eight write-ins. In District 4, it was Gregory D. Scott, 31 percent; Judith Steele Lanfranco, 23.8 percent; Tracy L. Davis, 22.9 percent; Martha Steward, 21.4 percent; and 13 candidates vying for the remaining vacancy.


Among major parties, Democrats had a larger turnout overall, with 4,632 total ballots cast – 2,696 absentees, 1,936 at precincts – amounting to 32.3 percent.


Approximately 2,948 registered Republicans – or 28.8 percent – voted in Tuesday's election, with 1,266 precinct ballots cast and another 1,660 cast by absentee ballot.


Green Party members had a 16.2-percent turnout, with a total of 63 ballots – 29 absentee, 34 precinct.


The largest turnout by supervisorial district was in District 5, where incumbent Supervisor Rob Brown was elected to a third term over challenger Robert Stark. Turnout in District 5 was 29.7 percent or 2,152 ballots cast.


Those results compare with 27.1 percent, or 1,922 ballots cast, in the crowded District 1 race, and 23.7 percent turnout or 1,555 votes cast in District 4, where Supervisor Anthony Farrington easily won his unopposed reelection.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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