Secretary of State Kevin Shelley said today that absentee voting so far is up more than 50 percent from last yearís election, even after a week of dead time while the federal courts put the election on hold. Shelley said 1.1 million Californians have voted already, compared to about 700,000 who had voted by this time in 2002. About 2.8 million Californians have requested absentee ballots. Shelley believes this to be a record but isnít sure because counties havenít kept records on this in the past.
In other news, Shelley laid out a timeline for a transition if Davis loses, and itís going to shock some people: a new governor would probably not take office until Nov. 15, 39 days after the Oct. 7 election, and possibly as late as Nov. 25.
Shelley said the counties have 28 days to complete their official canvas of the vote, then 7 days to get Board of Supervisor sign-off. Shelley then has four days to certify the election. Finally, the winning candidate can take up to 10 days to be sworn in if he or she chooses.