The first day of early voting in Bexar County broke a record. It was the highest number of first day voters ever for the May municipal elections - 6,968 voters cast ballots. It's also the first time early voting falls during the Fiesta week.
Bexar County Elections Administrator Jacque Callanen says she’s unsure what kind of impact Fiesta will have on early voting.Callanen says she’s unsure what kind of impact Fiesta will have on early voting.
“The crystal ball really, really cloudy or should I say has confetti in it from the cascarones. We just don’t know,” Callanen says.Callanen says.
Callanen adds this year there are also more candidates on the ballot for San Antonio’s City Council and the Mayor than ever before. If those candidates are out and about promoting themselves at Fiesta events it could have in impact.
“Will the candidates be out and about meeting everyone at Fiesta and will that increase our turn out, or will they be so focused and doing their functions and getting ready for their different events that the voting will slip their minds,” she adds.
In 2015, voter turn-out for municipal elections was about 12 percent, and that was when San Antonio was electing a new mayor after Julian Castro joined the Obama administration. First day early voting turn out was 5,419 then. Although, first day of the 2015 municipal run-off saw 7,741 votes cast.
This time an incumbent mayor is running for reelection in a race that has generated a lot of attention. In addition to that four council members are leaving and voters are choosing new representatives. And San Antonio is asking voters to approve the largest bond in its history.
So do any of those things account for a busy start to early voting? Callenen isn’t sure. She’s not making any turnout predictions.