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Still ballots left to count

In order to properly staff in-person polling stations on Tuesday, the Clerk-Treasurer’s Office paused counting mailed ballots, leaving nearly 3,400 votes that weren’t included in preliminary results released on Tuesday night.

On Monday evening, the clerk-treasurer’s office reported 18,008 mailed ballots had been accepted, but Tuesday night’s summary report showed only 14,624 were cast by mail.

Early voting numbers were much more on point with figures released by the clerk-treasurer’s office on Monday evening only showing a 63-vote difference.

We suspect there may well be some surprises in this 2020 general election and that’s why we’re only calling the races with the most overwhelming majority.

Those would be the race for Douglas County commission district 3 and department 1 district court judge where Republican Mark Gardner and Judge Tod Young both enjoyed 2-1 margins over their opponents.

This was the first time Young has had to defend his seat after being appointed in 2012 when Judge Dave Gamble retired.

Gardner will solidify the slow-growth majority on the Douglas County Board of Commissioners.

For all the eagerness for Election Day, only 3,354 Douglas County residents voted in-person or about 8.62 percent of the electorate. Most of the people who voted in person cast a ballot in the two weeks before the election.

That left mailed ballots as the largest segment of the results at 37.58 percent.

That’s a number we expect will increase as ballots arrive in the mail. It’s unfathomable to us that even the coronavirus would prevent Douglas voters from cracking its typical 90 percent turnout or better.

Over the course of the last month, we also had 1,148 voters either register or change their addresses since Sept. 25.

We don’t expect significant shifts in the eventual results, but like the weather in the Sierra, there’s always the possibility in Douglas County.