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By close-of-voting Thursday, Chaffee County 2020 election ballot returns had reached 69 percent. Just on Thursday, 639 mail ballots were returned. In all 10,404 mail ballots have been returned and 112 people have walked up to vote in person. Now just over four days from the Nov. 3 election, a total of 10,516 votes* have been cast in the county.

“We continue to encourage folks to vote early and not wait ’til Election Day,” says Chaffee Clerk and Recorder Lori Mitchell. “By voting early their votes will become a big part of the “big reveal” at 7:00 p.m. on November 3rd.”

Affiliation  Active Reg.     Mail   In-Person    Total      %

Democrat      3,979                  3,195         16                3,211       81

Republican    4,599                 3,153         40                3,193       69

Unaffiliated   6,423                 3,951         50                4,001       62

Libertarian      137                        67           5                       72       53

*Note, the rest are other minor parties

Given the historically unprecedented voter turnout, Mitchell is cautioning voters that lines may form at the county’s vote centers if voters wait until Nov. 3 to vote in person.  All those in line will queue up outside the vote centers due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions (that includes lines outside the voting tent in front of the county administration building) and the limited number of voting stations.

“The safest and most convenient way to vote is to vote your mail ballot or come vote early if you still can,” said Mitchell, who in yesterday’s AVV story about voting, laid out the new voting locations set up by the county.

Asked about her hopes for election turnout in Chaffee County, Mitchell was upbeat. “Based on what’s rolling in, I feel good about our county turnout,” said Mitchell. “I’m shooting for a 90 percent voter turnout.”

Mitchell added that voters can call her Clerk and Recorder office for information, 719-530-5604, or operators are standing by at the ELECTIONS  HOTLINE, 719-966-9082, to provide information or to take an order for a pick-up ballot. That operator isn’t somewhere in a distant place — it’s the Clerk and Recorder’s office and the person highly likely to answer the phone is Mitchell herself.