Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Referendum Turnout by Wards

The Laurel City Clerk's Office has done a manual count of the voters at yesterday's referendum.  These numbers may change after the official count comes back from the county election board.  But as of today, the count unofficially is:

Ward 1 - 467
Ward 2 - 354

What do you think?  What does this mean to you?  Comment here.


andy b. said...

it shows that the people in ward 2 are being disenfranchised how in the heck can we have elections like this and not include ward 2 its crazy people get away with this

Anonymous said...

these number show two things. both wards have high apathy. ward 2 has a little more apathy, probably because it has more renters. can't read much else into it.

The whole disenfranchisement argument is pretty funny, as if Laurel is this huge big city. if you can't drive or walk an extra 23 seconds to get to the phelps center, then you were never going to vote in the first place. Pop quiz: Which is closer to Phelps - the middle of Ward 2 or Patuxent Greens or Carriage Hill (both of which are in Ward 1)?

Rick Wilson said...

Disenfranchised - to deprive of a franchise, of a legal right, or of some privilege or immunity; especially : to deprive of the right to vote.

Andy B., I don't think you can say that ward 2 is being deprived of their franchise. 354 people voted.

I support a second polling place in Ward 2 for the convenience of those who do vote.

But I do not believe that a second polling place will significantly increase turnout in ward 2.

The statistics show that over the last 20 years, the turnout in both wards has remained within +- 10% of each other. There is absolutely no evidence of disenfranchisement.

andy b. said...

ward 2 has more people and fewer people vote from there people that live in ward 1 vote in there own neighborhood how can you say they are not being disenfranchised when they have to go to the other side of the city its not like the poll place is in the middle of town

Rick Wilson said...

Andy B. - I appreciate your perspective. Having a polling place for Ward 2 makes sense. It adds significant convenience to ward 2 residents. Maybe this will encourage more folks to vote in city elections.

I enjoy walking to the Phelps Center. I hope that in the near future, you will be able to walk the polls from your home in Ward 2.

I've been voting in Laurel at the Phelps Center since 1980 and I have never had to wait long for a machine. Ward 2 residents have been trekking to the same Phelps center since at least the 1950's, possibly before. Why is this a situation called a willful disenfranchisement today? What changed?

Unfortunately, there are people in our world who, in spite of actual death threats, still defiantly go their to their polling place. These courageous people overcome much more adversity than a 2 mile drive to exercise their franchise.

Let us agree that a ward 2 polling place will be a good thing for our city. But I must respectfully disagree with you that the lack of one rises to the level of legal, willful, disenfranchisement.

Thanks for taking the time to express your views.

andy b. said...

its sad most people who are not being discriminated against think that discrimination does not exist keep walking to the poll i hope to have your same right soon

Carreen said...

I just wanted to point out that I live in Ward 1 and my place of residence is Patuxent Greens, which means that I have to drive 5 minutes - or walk about 45 minutes, which I would do if I didn't have a car - to vote. So not everyone that lives in Ward 1 is right next to the Phelps Center. AND my polling place in National elections is OUTSIDE of the city limits. So hey, I am just happy that I have the privilege to vote and would go where ever I needed to go to cast my vote. Just thought I'd throw in another perspective. Keep up the great work Rick and great coverage with the Dog Show! Billy the Dog-faced Boy gives a shout out :)

Anonymous said...

Why on earth would ward 2 residents want a voting poll in their neighborhood?

1. We pay taxes to!!
2. We would also like to walk to the voting booths!
3. More registered voters live in ward 2 versus ward 1.
4. It makes sense!!

Why on earth would the current elected officials want a poll in ward 2?

1. Increase voter turnout!
2. Wake up a sleeping community!

Remember this will be a group of politicians that will have increase their terms by more than 20 months without an election.

Carol D said...

Oh please. Give it up. There was an election September 8. I knew when I voted for the term extension I was voting for Craig Moe, Gayle Snyder, Donna Crary, Jan Robison, Fred Smalls and Mike Leszcz. I voted for 6 individuals who have given unselfishly of themselves and have done so much for the City of Laurel. I can only hope they will all run again.

As for polling places, haven't you been listening? Mayor Moe and all Councilmembers have said there should be more than 1 polling place. They stayed with Phelps because there was PUBLIC testimony to do so.

You really need to attend or watch more Council meetings. They are televised,you know.

Anonymous said...


Exactly who testified against more polling places? Even if they did, our leaders failed us when they listened to them.

To point out the absurdity of your point, please allow me to be absurd for a second.

If, for example, a person or group of persons gave testimony that we should all drive on the left side of the road, should your heroes then say everyone should drive on the left side of the road?

Of course not. They are bound by the law that says we-in Maryland-drive on the right side of the road. Likewise, we-in Maryland-are also bound by the US Constitution. Your heroes have violated it.

It's this simple: 13,000 voters, one polling place. "Do the math" as Ed Ricks said.

You're free to consider the current incumbents heroes while others see them improperly attempting to increase their terms for a second time as something less then heroic. That's the beauty of elections. However, at the rate we're going, elections in Laurel seem to be going the way of the Dodo.

Carol D said...

Anon Mike, you are so easy! Ms. Jean Wilson, the supporter you courted so hard, asked that the polling place not be changed. She cared enough to attend the meeting publicly testify to the Council with her request.

Please post the video of you telling her she was wrong.