Election day is behind us and a number of counties saw drastic increases in voter turnout. According to Peoria County Election Commission Director Thomas Bride, 54.4% of registered voters exercised their right in 2018. That’s an increase from 46% in 2010 & 2014’s midterm elections.
Bride said the polls were unusually busy throughout the day. Normally they experience peaks and valleys, but say they were steadily busy this year.
Peoria County isn’t alone seeing a large increase in voter turnout. Tazewell County recorded a 57.65% turnout this year compared to 51.23% in 2014. An even larger increase was seen in McLean County. They went from 49.49% in 2014 to 60.6% this year.
Bride says that Peoria County did see a record number of early voting and mail-in ballots this year. Since they can’t start counting those votes until the polls close on Election Day, he says that contributed to a delay in reporting results.
“Our results probably went up later than they normally do last night because we were processing the large number of vote by mail ballots,” he explained. With limited staff members, he says counting took longer than usual. “We had all our election judges out in polling places so it was hard to get people in here to process the votes that were still coming in,” he added.
The results in Peoria County started rolling in around 8:30 and were reported at 100% by 10 last night.
There weren’t any problems at polling places throughout Peoria County. The largest sites see a couple thousand people while the smallest polls only see couple hundred. Bride says even though the results didn’t get online as fast as they wanted, it was an overall successful Election Day.