For Immediate ReleaseSeptember 15, 2021
Approximately 94,000 tallied and 31,000 in hand as canvass of election begins
San Rafael, CA – More than 94,000 ballots from this week’s Gubernatorial Recall Special Election have been tallied by the Marin County Elections Department, with results of approximately 31,000 still to be entered.
The two-question ballot simply asked registered voters if Governor Gavin Newsom should be recalled and, if so, who should be his replacement. Newsom needed more than 50% of the vote to remain in office. Voters were not required to answer both questions. Unofficial statewide results are on the Secretary of State’s website.
Of Marin County’s 173,722 registered voters, over 101,000 ballots had already been returned through Election Day and over 94,000 were included in the Tuesday night tally. Every active registered voter was mailed a vote-by-mail ballot for the recall election starting 29 days before Election Day, giving them the opportunity to vote by mail or wait until Election Day and cast a ballot in person at a polling place. Mail-in ballots that were stamped on Election Day can be received up to seven days after the election, meaning results as of September 15 are not final.
No later than Oct. 14, county election officials must finish their official vote canvass that is meant to account for every ballot cast and ensure every valid vote is included in the final tally. The Secretary of State will issue the statement of the vote and certify the results of the election by October 22.
The first local election results were posted online at 8:05 p.m. Tuesday, September 14, and the precinct count ended at about 12:45 a.m. Wednesday with 94,576 votes cast. With an estimated 31,000 ballots still to review, Marin’s turnout may approach 72% of the county’s 173,722 registered voters once all ballots are tallied.
Ballots remaining to be tallied are a mix of vote-by-mail and provisional ballots, most of which were turned in by hand, received in the mail, or received at drop boxes just around Election Day. Registrar of Voters Lynda Roberts said over 10,000 ballots were deposited on Election Day until 8 p.m. in the drop boxes at the Marin County Civic Center and at polling places.
Until all ballots are counted, the Elections Department will post updates to the online results every Wednesday and Friday by 5 p.m., starting Friday, September 17. Voter turnout percentages will be updated with each report, which is expected to grow beyond the estimated 31,000 in hand because of the additional ballots that may be received by September 21.
The COVID-19 pandemic presented logistical challenges to elections offices throughout the state, including law changes intended to ensure every eligible voter had options to vote safely.
Roberts has started the official canvass, which will continue the process of preparing and tallying all ballots received in the election, including vote-by-mail ballots and provisional ballots not included in the election night count. The initial process of checking mailed and provisional ballots includes entering the sealed ballots into a computer system and verifying that signatures on the envelopes match the signature on the voter registration card.
The canvass also includes the process of reconciling ballots and performing the manual tally of 1% of all the precincts and batches of vote-by-mail ballots.
The canvassing process is conducted weekdays 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and is open to the public. For more information, call the Elections Department at 415-473-6456.
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Lynda RobertsRegistrar of VotersElections Department
Marin Civic Center Administration Building3501 Civic Center DriveSuite 121San Rafael, CA 94903(415) 473-6401Email: Lynda RobertsElections website