Watch the votes being counted

By: - November 3, 2020 10:11 am

Join journalists and partisan political insiders in watching early voters’ ballots get counted as we wait for news to happen this Election Day. Central Count in Milwaukee is where all of the city’s absentee ballots are counted. Things got underway as the polls opened at 7 a.m. with a first shift of 400 workers and two more shifts to follow. No totals will be released until every last absentee ballot is tabulated tonight.

Speaking with reporters on Sunday, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett lamented that Wisconsin is one of just a handful of states that does not allow absentee ballots to be counted in advance.

In Wisconsin, Milwaukee is one of a number of municipalities that use a central count facility, according to the Wisconsin Elections Commission. “The governing body of any municipality may provide by ordinance that, instead of processing absentee ballots at the polling place, absentee ballots be processed and canvassed at an alternate site,” according to its website.

Workers were provided with thermometers, face shields, masks and snacks in Milwaukee where roughly 165,000 ballots will be processed.

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Melanie Conklin
Melanie Conklin

Melanie Conklin was the Wisconsin Examiner's founding Deputy Editor, serving from its launch July 1, 2019, until Feb. 1, 2022. She is proud to be a native of the state of Wisconsin, which gave humankind the typewriter, progressivism and deep-fried cheese curds. Her several decades in journalism include political beats and columns at Isthmus newspaper, the Wisconsin State Journal and other publications. When not an ink-stained wretch, she served time inside state, local and federal government in communications before returning to journalism at the Examiner. It’s what she’s loved ever since getting her master’s degree in journalism from the UW-Madison. Her family includes one husband, two kids, four dogs and five (or more) chinchillas.