POLL: Does Your Vote Count?

Voter apathy is a problem across California, and it's no different in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties. Do you think your vote makes a difference?

Did you spend time researching all the local ballot measures for the June 5 Presidential Primary Election?

Do you know who won the county supervisor race, whether the school parcel tax passed or do you even care?

We hear time and time again that every vote matters.

when interviewed by Patch Editor Joan Dentler on Tuesday.

"Everyone residing in the county will have their ballot counted," he said.

"In California the rumor that we don't count every vote is false," Tom said. "That's why it doesn't happen overnight and it takes 28 days to certify the results. Voters in San Mateo County have to have their voices heard."

Elections results updates for San Mateo County continue through June 13.

Tom acknowledged that turnout is not where he wants it to be.

"Turnout is low, but there have been a lot of changes in California since the voters passed Proposition 14 in 2010," Tom said referring to the California Two Primaries Act that requires candidates run in a single primary open to all registered voters.

As of June 8, voter turnout in San Mateo County was 31.6 percent, and in Santa Clara County 37.6 percent according to smartvoter.org.

Peninsula residents seem to care more about elections than most Californians. Statewide, voter turnout was just 27.5 percent.


The Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters has a recent @sccvote tweet at the top of its website, Over 90,000 ballots added to the results since Election Night, mostly Vote by Mail. Provisional ballots will be counted next week.

Did you vote in Tuesday's election, and if so why do you think it's important to exercise your right to vote?

If you didn't vote, why didn't you and what changes could be made for you to make every effort never to miss the chance to cast your ballot?

Geri Harper June 09, 2012 at 02:15 PM
I want every eligible voter to vote even if they don't have the same political leanings as I do. That vote is your voice. I don't get why people don't think their vote counts. I'll tell you though that when someone does not vote, it makes my voice that little bit louder and possibly more powerful.
Deb Wong June 09, 2012 at 02:56 PM
My votes count to ME, in that I know that I did everything I could for the outcome, in exercising my right to vote.
Glenn June 09, 2012 at 04:14 PM
George Muteff June 09, 2012 at 11:04 PM
"Does Your Vote Count?" Only if you exercise it. The latest election shows us that once again. Measure S would be a fine example.
George Muteff June 09, 2012 at 11:12 PM
Perhaps some elaboration might be due. According to SMC Elections, we have well over 30,000 residents within the CUSD (for example). Of those, roughly 14,400 are registered voters. Of that, 4,997 voters voted on Measure S, the "$81 Million Trust Me Bond of 2012". That says it all.
Jim C June 10, 2012 at 12:52 AM
My vote matters as much as anyone's. MORE than those who don't vote.
Tim Hoffman June 10, 2012 at 06:06 PM
Well, if you favored the runner up in a race lost by more than one vote, yours still wouldn't be the "vote that counted" in the losing bid. Belmont had an election in November last year that was decided by 11 votes. Close, but a race that's decided by under a dozen votes is as much a win as one ending in a landslide. What gets me is the high percentage of early mail-in ballots. There's something fundamentally wrong about elections being largely decided over a month before the "race" is finished. There's plenty of time to get to know candidates and positions for local races, but usually that time is during the campaigning the month before Election Day. All things held equal, it would seem to me that entrenched or well-know candidates (or at least incumbents in general) would have a distinct advantage in the mail-in vote.
CQ June 11, 2012 at 12:25 AM
Or the 1986 Sheriff's election when then dead San Mateo Co. Sheriff Brendan Maguire won the election...
Rex June 11, 2012 at 04:05 AM
The problem I have with voting is that incumbents usually have a financial advantage over newcomers as they find it easier to raise money from those who stand to gain from their re-election. So they win over and over, even when there's big problems that don't get addressed. This is an even bigger problem on the state and national level than locally.
Harry E. Smith June 11, 2012 at 03:04 PM
NO, your vote doesn't always count! Write-In votes seem to magically disappear in San Mateo County where they NEVER show up on the "official" count certified by the Elections Office. Makes you wonder if other votes are going the same way either on paper ballots or electronically. You wouldn't think so, but if they don't SHOW they counted ALL the votes, you have to start having some doubts!
Steve Sinai June 11, 2012 at 07:02 PM
You've got to put a stamp on the envelope when you mail in your write-in ballot, Harry.
Harry E. Smith June 11, 2012 at 10:06 PM
Thanks for the life lesson Steve, but I vote in person AND always use a paper ballot. They are supposedly sent to election headquarters, so how are they missing write-ins when the box is filled in and the name legibly written?
Bill Bohlen June 11, 2012 at 11:27 PM
Harry - Write-ins have to file for election just like people who are listed on the ballot. You can't just write-in John Q. Public and have it count.


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