Of the registered Oregon area residents, 28.6% of them voted in the Tuesday, Aug. 11, partisan primary election – but the vast majority of them did so with an absentee ballot for the second election in a row.
Following a trend started in April with the prevalence of COVID-19 in Dane County, the state and the country, 77.6% of voters filled out their ballots from home, or 3,406 voters combined from the villages of Oregon and Brooklyn, and the towns of Oregon, Rutland and Dunn.
Together for the August election, the five municipalities saw 28.6% voter turnout, or 4,389 votes cast out of its combined 15,338 registered voters.
The rate of voting ranged between 21.9% in the Village of Brooklyn to 31% in the Town of Dunn. In the Village of Brooklyn, 187 voters participated in the Aug. 11 election, out of 854 registered voters, and in the Town of Dunn, 1,125 votes were cast out of 3,634 registered voters. In the Village of Oregon, 2,031 people out of 7,113 voters, or 28.5%, voted; in the Town of Rutland, 361 people out of 1,423 registered voters, or 28.3%, voted; in the Town of Oregon, 685 people participated, or 29.6%, out of 2,314 voters.
The rate of absentee voting ranged from 62.6% in Brooklyn to 81.5% in the Village of Oregon. In the towns, the rate of absentee voting was in the 70% range, with Rutland having 70% absentee voting, Town of Oregon having 73.9% and Town of Dunn at 77.7%.
Those numbers closely reflect the percentage of Oregon area voters who participated in the April 7 election – during that election, as the state was in the middle of its Safer at Home mandate, 78% of voters submitted their ballots as absentee.
Of the absentee ballots sent out by the villages and the towns, 70.4% of the 4,836 were returned.
Oregon area voters had two contested races to vote for in the Aug. 11 election. One was for the state’s 80th Assembly district, between incumbent Sondy Pope (D-Mount Horeb) and newcomer Kimberly Smith (D-Oregon). Pope, who won the election for the district overall, collected 1,124 votes, while Smith tallied 701. Throughout the district, Pope received 5,265 votes, while Smith got 2,611.
The Town of Dunn also had a contested race for the state’s 16th Senate district, between Rep. Melissa Sargent (D-Madison) and Monona Grove school board president Andrew McKinney (D-Cottage Grove). Sargent, who won the race overall, received 700 votes from Dunn voters, and McKinney got 183. Throughout the district, Sargent received 27,717 votes, while McKinney tallied 8,328.
The overall participation rate in the April election was higher, coming in close to 55% of Oregon area residents who voted. That election featured a presidential primary, as well as uncontested village trustee, school board and supervisor races and a state-wide Supreme Court justice contest.