Doña Ana County surpasses total 2016 turnout

Michael McDevitt
Las Cruces Sun-News

LAS CRUCES - While most New Mexicans took advantage of early voting options this election season, voters are still turning out on Election Day.

According to data from the New Mexico Secretary of State's Office, as of 11:30 a.m. Tuesday 53,579 voters have cast ballots in person at Election Day sites.

In Doña Ana County, 6,374 voters have already voted on Election Day, bringing the number of people who have voted in the county to at least 73,000 people.

That means 2020 total countywide turnout has now exceeded 2016's countywide general election turnout, which the clerk's office said was approximately 70,000.

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On Monday morning, early in-person voting and absentee ballots returned in Doña Ana County totaled 66,988. Since Monday morning, 323 more absentee ballots have been received by the clerk's office, bringing the total cast in the county past 27,000.

Chief Deputy Clerk Lindsey Bachman said Monday all ballots in the clerk's office's possession were expected to be tabulated going into Tuesday.

Jeff Schwehn, 74, volunteers at the polling location at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum as the Democratic poll watcher.

Bachman said Tuesday that at least 2,750 people of the 31,984 who received absentee ballots in the county chose to vote in person instead, meaning only about a couple thousand absentee ballots or fewer are eligible to still be returned by 7 p.m., and ballots are being returned and/or voters can choose to vote in person instead throughout the day.

Statewide turnout was 61 percent, or 830,844 votes cast, at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. The county surpassed its early voting turnout from 2016 last week, and the state has set a new record for absentee ballots.

For more, check out our live Election Day blog.

Michael McDevitt is a city and county government reporter for the Sun-News. He can be reached at 575-202-3205, or @MikeMcDTweets on Twitter.