Polls have closed in Illinois and turnout figures are now available from polling centers nearby the DePaul community.
Oscar Mayer Elementary — the main polling place for the majority of on-campus students — reported 305 voters, or 35.8 percent of registered voters, showing up in person at the voting booth.
McGrath Arena — the polling spot for on-campus students living East of Sheffield — reported 308 voters, a 37 percent turnout, while the Lincoln Park Library at 1150 W. Fullerton reported a turnout of 613 voters right before closing time.
Richard Stuckley, a voting volunteer at the LP Library, reminded people not to view these results as the final voter tally.
“Maybe only 75 percent of active voters do so in-person, meaning we can’t yet really conclusively say what the results might be,” Stuckley said. “This is especially true since we are dealing with very small sample sizes of voters.”
In addition to voting in-person, many voters may choose to cast their ballot early via mail. These votes are generally kept separate from in-person ballots throughout most of Election Day.
However, the turnout was still fairly impressive. Pew reports that voter turnout rarely exceeds 40 percent nationally during midterm elections. Once mail-in ballots are added to the in-person total, it is possible that local polling areas could show a turnout that exceeds the national average.
“It was never crowded, but it was a steady stream all day,” an Oscar Mayer voting volunteer named Todd, said. “We followed the rules, helped people get where they needed to go if their registration wasn’t proper, but overall I was impressed by the turnout.”
With regards to student voters, there were a few minor issues reported.
“Some college-aged people didn’t register properly,” Griffin Holiday, a volunteer at McGrath Arena, said. “We’ve had to send a bunch of people to the proper place downtown to register properly. Many students tried to vote here with their suburban addresses registered in the system, which isn’t proper.”