As the presidential contest awaits late results from key states including Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, former Vice President Joe Biden led the incomplete Electoral vote count by 264 to President Donald Trump’s 214.
“Your patience is commendable,” Biden told supporters at a drive-in rally in Wilmington, Del., early Wednesday morning. “We believe we are on track to win this election. It ain’t over until every vote is counted. Every ballot is counted. We’re feeling good about where we are.”
Some states count ballots postmarked by Election Day even if they arrive afterward.
A similar process is underway locally.
According to a notice on Hanson’s town website, The Town of Hanson will be holding a ballot counting session at 9 a.m., Monday, Nov. 9 in the Selectmen’s meeting room to count and tally any ballots that were dropped in the Ballot Drop Box in front of Town Hall after 5 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3 as well as any ballots that were received with a postmarked date on or before Nov. 3 and received by 5 p.m. on Nov. 6.
Whitman Town Clerk Dawn Varley said they would be going through the same process.
Biden took Minnesota at 12:17 a.m., minutes before his remarks. Trump had won Iowa, Montana and Ohio at about the same time.
Locally, Biden carried Whitman and Trump eked out a win in Hanson.
Incomplete results posted Tuesday night, gave Biden 4,487 votes in Whitman to Trump’s 3,875. Third party candidates garnered 197 votes. In Hanson Trump received 3,312 votes to Biden’s 3,240 with 158 for third party candidates.
There were 58 write-in votes in Hanson in the presidential race and 53 in Whitman.
Incumbent state Rep. Josh Cutler carried all three towns in the 6th Plymouth District against Republican challenger Tatyana Semyrog.
“I’m truly grateful to the voters of Hanson for the vote of confidence,” Cutler said of the incomplete results. “We had a great coalition of support here in Hanson, across all political stripes. I’m looking forward to getting back to work. Thank you to everyone who came out to vote and thank you to my opponents for a spirited race.”
Asked for a comment about the race at the polls Tuesday, Semyrog declined to speak with the Express.
Supporters of candidates in both parties were out in force to support them, holding signs or flags and waving to passersby and motorists.
Whitman Democratic Committee Chairman Michael Hayes said he was confident of Biden’s chances and expressed concern about apparent voter suppression in several states, as he held a Biden-Harris placard.
“Locally and across the country, we’re very optimistic,” he said. “I think the voter turnout is unprecedented.” He noted there was a line out the door at Town Hall by 6:40 a.m., despite two weeks of early voting.
“Voter turnout, pre-Election Day, was about 47 percent, that’s incredible,” Hayes said. “Bottom line, just to see the people participate in the process is extremely encouraging. I wish we could see this every year.”
He expressed disappointment that there was no Democratic challenger to state Rep. Alyson Sullivan for the 7th Plymouth District. Sullivan garnered 6,385 votes against 2,181 blanks and 96 write-ins.
“That was disappointing,” Hayes said. “We’ve got to try to rectify that next time around.”
Down the street, acting Selectmen Chairman Dan Salvucci and School Committee member Dan Cullity were staffing the Republican visibility tent.
“We’ve got a lot more Trump support, we just have to see what the country does,” Cullity said. “It’s kind of up in the air. You can’t go by what everybody says.”
He noted 2016 polling that indicated Hillary Clinton was a sure winner, but that she “ended up losing all the key states.”
“You can’t go by the polls, it’s what the people want,” Cullity said. “There’s a whole lot of unenrolled people, they’re the ones that decide what happens in the country.”
Varley said the early voting turnout would prove helpful in counting ballots. Early vote ballots are counted, starting at the midafternoon slowdown in voting traffic on Election Day before after-work voters arrive.
She estimated that 85 percent of eligible voters could cast ballots, noting that at nearly 1 p.m., Whitman usually gets a turnout of 75 percent in a presidential year.
“We’re pretty happy here,” Varley said, crediting retired Assistant Town Clerk Yvonne Evans for stepping forward to help with the process. “I didn’t have a problem getting workers.”
Two students from the W-H History National Honor Society were slated to observe the ballot counting process for a school project.
Hanson Town Clerk Elzabeth Sloan said just under 4,000 people took advantage of early voting, out of 8,059 registered voters — nearly half — and she was hoping for another 3,000 to cast ballots Tuesday.
Hawkins/Walker — 44
Jorgensen/Cohen — 153
Trump/Pence — 3,875
Edward Markey — 4,611
Kevin O’Connor — 3,762
Shiva Ayyadurai — 63
Stephen Lynch — 5,580
Jonathan Lott — 2,016
Councillor 4th Dist
Chris Iannella — 6,155
State Rep. 7th Plymouth
Alyson Sullivan 6,385
Matt McDonough – 6,069
Greg Hanley — 3,891
John Riordan — 2,548
Jared Valanzola — 3,341
Thomas O’Brien – 4,814
Carina Mompelas – 3,014
Yes — 6,290
Yes — 4,591
No — 3,517
Hawkins/Walker — 34
Jorgensen/Cohen — 124
Trump/Pence — 3,312
Edward Markey — 3,244
Kevin O’Connor — 3,351
Shiva Ayyadurai — 156
Bill Keating — 3,397
Helen Brady — 2,945
Michael Manley — 141
Councillor 4th Dist
Chris Iannella — 4,549
State Rep. 6th Plymouth
Josh Cutler — 3,555
Tatyana Semyrog — 3,047
Matt McDonough – 4,575
Greg Hanley — 2,966
John Riordan — 1,859
Jared Valanzola — 3,009
Thomas O’Brien – 3,627
Carina Mompelas – 2,582
No — 1,596
No — 4,635
Bold = winner based on incomplete results tabulated Tuesday, Nov. 3