And the winner for having the best voter turnout in Douglas County for the Nov. 3 election is…

Solem Township!

That’s according to 2020 general election statistics released Tuesday, Nov. 10 by Vicki Doehling, Douglas County elections coordinator.

Douglas County Election Results by inforumdocs on Scribd

At 7 a.m. on election morning, Solem Township had 165 registered voters. A total of 162 residents of the precinct voted – a turnout of 98.2%.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

But in a way, all voters in Douglas County were winners because a total of 24,256 residents out of 26,444 registered voters did their civic duty – a turnout of 91.7%. It’s the highest turnout since the 2004 presidential election between George W. Bush and John Kerry, which drew 96.5% of the voters.

Despite a pandemic that prompted 10 precincts to switch to mail-in or absentee ballots only, the county’s election process went smoothly, according to Doehling. Her office accepted a total of 13,982 absentee ballots, nearly 53 percent of the total votes cast.

“All across America, people have adapted to a new way of doing business during a pandemic,” she said. “I want to thank the voters for their patience and understanding in using alternative methods of voting to keep each other safe.

“Some of you shared words of kindness that helped us get through the many long days spent processing the 258% increased volume of absentee and mail ballots,” Doehling added. “I’m incredibly proud of our staff for their adaptability and willingness to do whatever was needed to ensure that we continue to protect the integrity of our elections. Finally, to the poll workers for taking the extra precautions needed to protect the health and safety of in-person voters. This has been an election year that we will not soon forget.”

Razor-thin wins

Turnout was especially important for four races in Douglas County where the margin of victory came down to 10 votes or less:

  • Carlos City Council. Four candidates filed for two positions and Todd Burgess collected the most votes, 134, but the remaining spot came down to one vote. Chris Miller had 100 votes to Paul Kruchten's 99. Linda Fread was fourth with 74 votes.
  • Miltona Township. The race for a Miltona Township supervisor seat was tight but Jarrod Oberg came out on top with 272 votes to Matthew Kugler's 267.
  • Evansville mayor. Calvin Lundeen edged Monica Olson by just eight votes, 156 to 148.
  • Miltona mayor. Brian Carpenter narrowly defeated Alan Bettermann, 120 to 110.

Results are not available yet for five positions that were determined through write-in votes after no one filed. This includes Millerville mayor, Forada City Council, Millerville City Council, Carlos Township treasurer and a Brandon City Council special election.

Here is the voter turnout for Douglas County’s 37 precincts:

  1. Solem Township – 98.2%, 162 votes.

  2. Belle River Township (mail) – 97%, 228 votes.

  3. Moe Township (mail) – 96.5%, 599 votes.

  4. City of Forada – 96.2%, 125 votes.

  5. Holmes City Township – 95.8%, 593 votes.

  6. Ida Township (mail) – 95.7%, 1,013 votes.

  7. Osakis Township – 95.7%, 230 votes.

  8. Urness Township – 95.6%, 197 votes.

  9. Orange Township – 95.4%, 230 votes.

  10. Lake Mary Township – 95.4%, 832 votes.

  11. Hudson Township (mail) – 95.1%, 653 votes.

  12. Carlos Township – 94.7%, 1,616 votes.

  13. City of Miltona – 94.6%, 247 votes.

  14. Alexandria Township (mail) – 94.6%, 1,989 votes.

  15. Leaf Valley Township – 94.4%, 335 votes.

  16. Alexandria Ward 1, Precinct 1 – 94%, 298 votes.

  17. LaGrand Township (mail) – 93.8%, 2,953 votes.

  18. City of Osakis – 93.7%, 860 votes.

  19. Alexandria Ward 1, Precinct 2 – 93.2%, 1,581 votes.

  20. Brandon Township (mail) – 93%, 547 votes.

  21. Spruce Hill Township (mail) – 92.6%, 264 votes.

  22. Miltona Township – 92.6%, 650 votes.

  23. Evansville Township – 91.9%, 148 votes.

  24. Millerville Township – 90.8%, 238 votes.

  25. City of Kensington – 90.4%, 160 votes.

  26. City of Garfield – 90.1%, 173 votes.

  27. City of Nelson – 90.1%. 100 votes.

  28. Alexandria Ward 2 – 90.1%, 1,498 votes.

  29. City of Carlos – 89.7%, 287 votes.

  30. City of Millerville (mail) – 89.7%, 52 votes.

  31. City of Brandon – 87.2%, 287 votes.

  32. Alexandria Ward 5, Precinct 1 – 87%, 147 votes.

  33. Alexandria Ward 5, Precinct 2 – 86.1%, 1,116 votes.

  34. Lund Township (mail) – 85.9%, 214 votes.

  35. Alexandria Ward 4 – 84.3%, 1,356 votes.

  36. Alexandria Ward 3 – 83.9%, 1,762 votes.

  37. City of Evansville – 81.8%, 320 votes.