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KMUW News brings you the latest candidate information and resources on how to vote in the 2020 elections.

The 2020 Election Set Records In Sedgwick County

Fernando Salazar
A sign in front of the Health Department Administrative Center tells people to vote.

The 2020 general election set records in Sedgwick County for early voting and the overall number of ballots cast.

A post-election report presented to Sedgwick County commissioners this month shows for the first time, more voters cast ballots during the early voting period than on Election Day.

Sedgwick County Election Commissioner Tabitha Lehman says 70% of registered voters participated in November’s election, and 68% of those voters used mail-in ballots or in-person early voting.

Sedgwick County 2020 General Election by the numbers:

  • 322,381 registered voters
  • 225,771 ballots cast: 87,382 mail-in ballots; 67,387 ballots from early in-person voting; 62,624 ballots from Election Day voting
  • 8,378 provisional ballots cast
  • 958 people worked at polling sites on Election Day
  • 241 people worked at polling sites during the early voting period

Lehman says the high volume of early voting took the stress off Election Day polling locations.

"We were able to social distance very well at the polling places," she said. "We did not have long lines at the polling places, and that just helped us take care of voters on Election Day."

Data shows the 2020 election had a higher number of mail-in ballots cast and early voting than the 2016 and 2012 elections.

The county had 83 polling locations open on Nov. 3, and 18 sites throughout the county were available during the early voting period. This was the first year the county offered ballot drop boxes and a mega-voting site at Intrust Bank Arena, where more than 12,000 people voted.

Lehman says the ballot drop boxes were popular. Her staff emptied the one near the Sedgwick County Courthouse in Wichita four to five times a day in the days before Election Day. 

More than 225,000 ballots were cast in the 2020 election. Lehman says that’s the highest number of ballots for any election in Sedgwick County history.

The election office processed more than 83,000 voter registrations in the weeks between the August primary and November general election.

Deborah joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014 as a news reporter. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita in 2013, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area.