Editorial | Record numbers

Editorial | Record numbers

Voting is — and ought to be — as easy as pie.

Champaign County voters set a record for turnout in a nonpresidential primary year.

The county clerk's office said unofficial totals show a vote total of 31,211 votes, eclipsing the previous record of 28,639 in 2002.

Most interesting about the numbers is that roughly one-third of the votes cast were generated either by mail or through early voting.

That number represents a feather in the cap of Champaign County Clerk Gordy Hulten. His office went all out to make early voting as convenient as possible, establishing early voting at multiple times and multiple sites throughout the county.

Early voting began on Feb. 8 and concluded on March 19.

Under the rules, any voter validly registered in Champaign County could vote at any early voting location during the early voting period.

It's impossible to determine whether it was the early voting, motivated Democrats or some combination of the two that led to the new record. But people who wanted to vote had ample opportunity to do so, and that's what early voting is supposed to encourage.

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