What follows is a digital voter guide for Tuesday’s election.
As of 6 p.m., 4,986 New Canaan residents had cast their ballots—322 by absentee ballot and 4,664 at the polls. The number of residents casting ballots at Saxe and NCHS represents a 42 percent increase over the last local election through the same hour.
If voters turn out this year at the same rate as they did in 2015, New Canaan will see a 39 percent turnout.
Here’s a table detailing total voter turnout in recent local elections:
New Canaan Voter Turnout, Recent Local Elections
And here’s a table that compares hourly voter turnout two years ago—when there was no truly contested first selectman race—to this year:
New Canaan Election 2018: Voter Turnout, Hourly Count
|Hour||Votes 2018||% of electorate (2018)||Votes 2016|
|7 to 8 p.m.||400||68.8%||234|
|6 to 7 p.m.||594||65.9%||705|
|5 to 6 p.m.||507||61.7%||579|
|4 to 5 p.m.||536||59.5%||508|
|3 to 4 p.m.||662||54.3%||495|
|2 to 3 p.m.||604||49.6%||492|
|1 to 2 p.m.||518||45.3%||532|
|12 to 1 p.m.||542||41.6%||594|
|11 a.m. to 12 p.m.||736||37.8%||878|
|10 to 11 a.m.||817||32.5%||886|
|9 to 10 a.m.||833||26.7%||891|
|8 to 9 a.m.||742||20.8%||961|
|7 to 8 a.m.||766||15.5%||940|
|6 to 7 a.m.||647||10%||886|
Kit Devereaux, Democratic candidate for first selectman, said minutes before she entered Saxe to cast her own ballot that she was “feeling really good” about the campaign and election.
“I think I’ve done absolutely everything I can, and so now it’s just a matter of waiting to see what happens,” she told NewCanaanite.com. “And either way, I will be working as hard as I can for New Canaan.”
Republican Kevin Moynihan, who also is vying for first selectman, awoke at 3:30 a.m., got to NHCS at 4:15 a.m. to set up and then went to the train station to greet commuters.
“I’m feeling great,” Moynihan said from the Republican tent set up outside NCHS, adding that he has had “a lot of positive feedback.”
“People are coming out and voting,” Moynihan said. “It’s going to be a busy day. Turnout is going to be huge.”
Tom Butterworth, Republican candidate for Town Council, called it the “greatest privilege” to participate in our nation’s election process.
“It’s just a great day,” as he arrived at the NCHS polls with his wife, Libby, and their golden retriever, Butter. “I love Election Day.”
John Engel, an incumbent Republican Town Councilman said New Canaan is fortunate to have “a very strong slate of candidates from both parties.”
“I would be happy to work with any of them,” Engel said as he and others seeking elected office greeted voters outside NCHS on a clear, crisp day. “They have all been dedicated to this community for many, many years and in many different capacities, from Inland Wetlands and architecture to historical preservation. It’s a very exciting group, that we have such a willingness to participate in our town government.”
We also caught up with the three Democratic candidates seeking seats on the Town Council, incumbent Sven Englund as well as Colm Dobbyn and Liz Donovan.
Here’s what they had to say:
- Dobbyn: “I’m feeling pretty enthusiastic. I think there’s a lot of energy in support of the Democratic candidates this year. I think we have a great ticket with Kit running for first selectwoman and Rob for treasurer as well as the Town Council candidates. I think we really have a chance this year.”
- Englund: “I think it’s going to be an exciting race, right down to the wire tonight. A lot of people are looking for a very big turnout, and over 40 percent would be huge in a municipal, off-year election in town.”
- Donovan: “I[m very excited. I’ve never done anything like this before. It’s been a great learning experience and I’ve met some incredible people and, win or lose, I’m so happy to have been a part of it. I think everyone should do this once in their lives. this is part of their civic duty and it’s been great. Whatever happens it’s been great. I hope we all do well and I have great confidence in our team and think our town would be very well-served.”
Rich Townsend, a Republican seeking a Town Council seat who had been the major vote-getter at the GOP caucus in July, said he was “excited” about his campaign and candidacy.
“I think the campaign has gone well,” Townsend said. “I’m just hoping the results turn out well. You never know till the end.”
Incumbent Republican Town Council member Penny Young said she as “feeling great” on Election Day.
“It’s a good old American day of exercising your privilege to vote in this country,” Young said as she greeted electors outside the polls at Saxe. “It’s a sacred privilege.”
Town Treasurer Andrew Brooks, a two-term Republican, is facing a challenge this year from Democrat Rob Fryer.
Brooks said he was feeling “really good” about turnout.
“I’ve been greeting voters all morning,” he said. “It’s been really interesting. I’ve never had a contested race before so I’ve been going all out. I’ve met hundreds if not thousands of people in this process, so it’s been really healthy. I’m really proud to have received the endorsements of the New Canaanite and the Advertiser and I guess I’m one of the few candidates that got both endorsements. So I’m feeling strong about everything that has been accomplished over the last four years, and just getting that message out to voters.”
New Canaan electors should be aware that this year’s ballot is two-sided, Democratic Registrar of Voters George Cody said. A sample ballot may be viewed here.
Who Is Running
Contested races in this year’s local election included first selectman, town treasurer and Town Council. Here are those candidates. We’ve included a note and link next to those the New Canaanite has endorsed:
- Kit Devereaux (D) *endorsed
- Kevin Moynihan (R)
- Rob Fryer (D)
- Andrew Brooks (R) *endorsed
- Liz Donovan (D) *endorsed
- Colm Dobbyn (D) *endorsed
- Sven Englund (D) *endorsed
- Tom Butterworth (R) *endorsed
- John Engel (R) *endorsed
- Rich Townsend (R) *endorsed
- Penny Young (R)
Others appearing on the ballot include candidates for town clerk, Board of Education, Board of Assessment Appeals and constable. Full biographies of all Republican candidates can be found here, and Democrats here.
Where To Vote
Those who reside in voting district No. 1 in New Canaan, covering the western and northern parts of town, cast ballots at New Canaan High School. All others vote at Saxe Middle School. Here’s a voting district map. And here’s a website to help find your polling location if you’re still unsure. Polls are open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Those seeking information on same-day registration should contact the Registrars of Voters office.
New Canaan Party Count