Town of Middleton clerk reports ‘unprecedented’ in-person voter turnout

Town of Middleton voters braving the long line to vote.
Town of Middleton voters braving the long line to vote.(Marcus Aarsvold/NBC15)
Published: Nov. 9, 2022 at 9:10 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Town of Middleton clerk attributed “unprecedented” in-person voter turnout as the reason for long lines outside of its town hall polling location Tuesday.

According to Town Clerk Barbara Roesslein, in-person voter turnout was nearly double this year compared to 2020.

During the 2020 Presidential Election, 1,047 people voted in-person and 3,791 people voted absentee. During this year’s election, 1,919 people voted in-person and 1,904 voted absentee. With two voting machines, the town can process 294 voters per hour.

The clerk also pointed out that the town has grown substantially in recent years.

As long as voters were in line by 8 p.m., they could still vote. The last person in line, a voter named Heather, was finished voting around 11 p.m. Tuesday.

The clerk stated that the Town Board increased the number of poll workers to assist in the election this year, as they anticipated a high turnout. There were also more staff brought on throughout the day to help process absentee ballots, which helped poll workers deal with in-person voters and same-day registration.

Roesslein thanked the community for their grace during the busy day.

“Town officials and election workers received many kind and supportive comments from the citizens of the Town of Middleton during the day, who recognized the difficulty of the job of running elections and the Town is very appreciative of the support,” Roesslein said.

The Town Board will look into more options for future elections in order to reduce the wait time, the clerk added.

Roesslein also said the town was aware that other communities in the area had similar wait-time experiences.

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