Voting


Citizens have the privilege and duty

to elect office holders and influence public policy.


“…If the citizens neglect their Duty and place unprincipled men in office,
the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made,
not for the public good so much as for selfish or local purposes;
corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the Laws;
the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men;
and the rights of the citizen will be violated or disregarded. 
If (our) government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness,
it must be because the citizens neglect the Divine Commands,
and elect bad men to make and administer the Laws.”  
  (Noah Webster, 1831)


“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice:
 but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.”  
          (Proverbs 29:2)

  • Voting-by-Mail.  There is little excuse not to cast a ballot today.  All citizens can register to vote online, and all voting in Spokane County is now done by “Vote-by-Mail.”  (Spokane County had their first all mail-in-ballot election March 2006.)  
  • Non-English speaking voters.  Spokane has many citizens who cannot read a voter’s guide—those who are blind, uneducated, have a visual impairment like dyslexia, or those whose primary language is not English.  Spanish pamphlets (only) may be picked up at the Spokane County Elections Office.  Contact the Elections Office to request ballots that are printed in English, Spanish, Cambodian, Chinese, Korean, Laotian, Russian and Vietnamese.

  • Many citizens do not vote.  Many citizens feel they are poorly represented, and even betrayed by those elected to act in their behalf.  However, generally speaking, less than half of Spokane County’s eligible voters voice their opinions by voting in elections; and as a result, low voter turnouts do not accurately reflect the true will of all of the people in Spokane.

    November 8, 2016 General Election
    306,261   Registered Voters
    239,229   Total Ballots Counted
     78.11%    Voter Turnout
     49.92%    Donald J. Trump / Michael R. Pence
     41.26%    Hillary Clinton / Tim Kaine

    August 2, 2016 Primary
    296,722    Registered Voters
    100,951    Total Ballots Counted
     34.02%    Voter Turnout

    November 3, 2015 General Election
    286,245    Registered Voters
    120,460    Total Ballots Counted
     42.08%    Voter Turnout

    August 4, 2015 Primary
    210,360     Registered Voters
      62,170     Total Ballots Counted
     29.55%     Voter Turnout

  • Primary Elections in August.   Why does Washington hold all Primary Elections in August, the month when so many people are out of town?  
Senate Bill 6237 moved our Primary Elections from the former dates of either the 3rd Tuesday in September or the 7th Tuesday before the General Election, depending on which was earliest—to the 3rd Tuesday in August. 

The reason for the change was due to the 7-week window between the September Primary and the November General Election, which does not leave enough time for the Spokane County Elections Office to count ballots, deal with any recounts or contested elections, and get out the absentee ballots for the General Election.  It also moved the candidate filing deadline to an earlier date, requiring overseas and absentee ballots to be mailed sooner, and giving counties more time to certify elections.

In addition, not all elections are held in August and November.  Elections for other positions such as School Board Members are often held throughout the year.   

Statistics
  • In 2014, 75% of the population in Spokane County was registered to vote.  In that same year, 56.4% of registered voters voted in the Midterm Election.  (Spokane Community Indicators, EWU) 
What You Can Do
  • Vote - Elections matter!  Thousands of new laws are passed every year in our country, by those who were elected by the people - people who took the time to cast a ballot.  

  • Christians need to make their voices heard at the polls.  Ted Cruz says Christian believers need to vote their Biblical values, rather than allowing non-believers to select America's future leaders.  "For far too long, Christians have been staying home, have been ceding the public square to non-believers.  When we look at the state of the country, when our heart weeps at what is happening to the country, and we wonder, 'Why is it that the Federal government is waging war on life, is waging war on marriage, is waging war on religious liberty,' is it any wonder when 54 million evangelical Christians stayed home and did not vote in 2012?  If we allow our leaders to be selected by non-believers, we shouldn't be surprised when our leaders don't share our values...I am working to encourage Christians to stand up and vote Biblical values."  Senator Ted Cruz, GOP Presidential Candidate, Charlene Aaron reporting, CBN News, The 700 Club, February 12, 2016)
  • Take the time to determine which candidates have true integrity and wisdom. 
  • Determine which candidates will protect the freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution.  Campaign posters and ads often create confusion, providing inadequate information to make informed decisions to keep our government in check. 
  • Study and listen to both sides of the issues, looking for unbiased journalism.  
Local Organizations
Additional Resources
Spokane County Elections
Locate assistance for -
Register to Vote
Ballot Drop box locations
Online Voters Guides
Voter Service Center Locations
Election Results
https://www.spokanecounty.org/177/Elections

Federal Election Commission
Administering and Enforcing Federal Campaign Finance Laws
http://www.fec.gov/

Federal Voting Assistance Program

Military and Overseas Citizens
https://www.fvap.gov/

Washington State Elections Office
https://www.sos.wa.gov/elections/auditors/