The 2016 Primary Election Was One to Remember
Primary Election Day 2016 in Adams County was one for the books. A shortage of ballots at a number of polling places led to a frustrated citizenry who had to come back to their polling sites two or three times to vote. Some never made it back and didn’t get to vote at all. There is no doubt that blame goes to the Adams County Clerk’s Office. To his credit, Adams County Clerk Chuck Venvertloh took the blame. He obviously underestimated the projected voter totals in advance. Venvertloh projected the turnout to be 27%, but it ended up at 37%. As a comparison, the 2014 Primary Election turnout was 18.5%.
But, before you lay all the blame on Mr. Venvertloh, the best clerk in America never would have projected the volume of people who turned out on a Primary Election Day. Oh, could you guess it would be higher than normal thanks to the local battle for the State’s Attorney? Sure. That, plus the increased interest in the national primary battles for President, certainly contributed to the increase in voters. But nobody could have expected the massive turnout that came yesterday in Adams County.
Then couple that with the amount of Democrats who asked for Republican ballots and you can see how this problem blew up in Mr. Venvertloh’s face. Also in the mix of things that happened during the election was the fact that the computer system failed twice forcing the server for the programming system to shut down as well.
Was all this handled well after the problems became known is not for me to answer, but I certainly can understand the dilemma facing the Clerk's office and I can understand the frustration of the voters yesterday as well. A frustration that was exhibited by one city official who felt it necessary to use some inappropriate language during a TV interview. I certainly hope his office doesn’t make any mistakes in the future. Better dot those “I”s and cross those “T”s.
Not to get to sappy here, for those who waited hours to vote and were within reason to be upset, remember there are soldiers who wait hours too in fox holes risking their lives now and in the past to allow us this opportunity. Nobody died waiting here yesterday during our voting process.
Mr. Venvertloh and the Adams County Clerk's Office need to remember the problems and correct them for the next election. The last thing Adams County Clerk Chuck Venvertloh wanted was for him to be the story of the election. What are your thoughts?