SAN DIEGO (CNS) - More than half of the mail-in ballots distributed to voters around San Diego County have been returned as of Monday, according to Registrar Deborah Seiler.
She told City News Service that 901,816 absentee ballots were sent out, and 464,127 had been returned as of this afternoon. About 58 percent of registered Republicans had returned their ballots, compared to 52 percent of Democrats and 43 percent of those who declined to state a preference, according to the registrar.
"The voter interest is really very healthy," Seiler said. Around 1,900 people went to the Registrar of Voters office in Kearny Mesa on Saturday to cast ballots, a very solid total, she said.
She said she expects most of the outstanding mail-in ballots to be returned by the time polls close Tuesday night. Throughout the rest of today, people with ballots can drop them off at the registrar's office at 5201 Ruffin Road, roughly off Interstate 15 and Clairemont Mesa Boulevard.
"It'll be easier tomorrow, they can go to any polling place and drop off their ballot," Seiler said.
The strong early rate of returns for the ballots mean that the initial release of results on election night could be higher than her original prediction of 25 percent of the vote, which she made at a meeting with media representatives last month.
"We could have pretty close to 30 percent (of the count) released at 8 p.m., if we have a 75 percent turnout," Seiler said.
San Diego area voters will help choose a president, senator and a variety of local and state legislators; decide whether to approve tax hikes proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown and whether to abolish the state's death penalty; and consider another construction bond for the San Diego Unified School District.