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Evanston had biggest same-day-registration turnout

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The Cook County Clerk's office this afternoon confirmed that Evanston had the largest same-day-registration turnout of any of the 18 locations offering that new option for voters this week.

In all 430 people — most of them Northwestern University students — made use of the same-day option to both register and vote.

That's more than double the average for all the locations. Next highest, after Evanston, was Arlington Heights with a turnout of 352.

The new service was "the great success of the election for suburban Cook County," said James Scalzitti, deputy communications director for the clerk's office.

The high turnout in Evanston surprised officials and left them understaffed to handle the crowd. But people "were in good spirits," Scalzitti says, even though the last votes by people who arrived before the normal poll closing hour of 7 p.m. weren't cast until two hours latter.

Scalzitti says the law approving the same-day-registration option was designed as a pilot project and applied only to this election.

So whether it will be available for future elections will depend on further legislative action.

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