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.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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  1. Did Democrats steal the election in Illinois?

    What a sad day for democracy and Evanston.

    As poll results came in showing Rauner winning, a bunch of people rushed to vote, filling up the lines hours after the polls were suppose to close.

    This is why Quinn refuses to concede.

    How can James Scalzitti, deputy communications director for the clerk's office, say the option to register and vote on election day was a success with all these problems such as election judges quitting or not showing up, electronic machines automatically voting for Demcorat candidates, etc.?

    The Democratic party in Illinois did everything it could to sway the votes in their favor. Same day registration ONLY FOR THIS ELECTION, non-binding liberal-minded voter referendums to mandate birth control in health plans, raise the minimum wage, a millionaire's tax and suing two grassroot groups to keep off of November's ballot voter referendums for term limits and gerrymandering reform.

    On top of that, Democrats Larry Sufferdin, Robyn Gabel and Daniel Biss all ran unopposed. Gabel voted to raise income taxes and Biss is pushing through a Robin Hood bill that will take more state money away from Evanston public schools for poorer ones.

    Evanston voters overwhelmingly voted for Democratic candidates and all of the liberal voter referendums in which Democrat lawmakers with a supermajority could have easily passed.

    Evanston and Cook County is an island like communist Cuba surrounded by red America. They are blindly one-party minded and vote like mindlesss sheep. I am ashamed at my fellow Evanstonians who care not about fair elections or even common sense. We are trying to get out dodge as I know many others are, too. There is no hope in Illinois even if Democrats don't manage to steal the election from Rauner.

    Get out while the gettin is good.

    1. Keyboard Chicken Little

      Get over yourself. A lot of Democrats live in Evanston, but so do a lot of Republicans, despite being a minority. People live here for reasons other than politics. 

      1. If it is not politics, why

        If it is not politics, why does Evanston keep returning low quality candidates, like Jan Schakowsky, back to office. I would not call her dumb but I have never seen her win a debate. I the last 2 debate I saw, she got clobbered. Her last town hall was on healthcare. I was about 50th in line of about 400 other and found that she had bused in 400 -500 union members that were spread around the auditorium to shout down questions she didn't want to answer. I wound say she is devious at best. It is an embarrassment to have her in congress representing this district.

        If not politics, why Schakowsky?

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