Election results 2021

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Official results

Active voters in Boulder: 68,885
Turnout: 49%
Precinct with highest turnout: 868 (Highland Park near King Soopers in Table Mesa) 67.72%
Precinct with lowest turnout: 876 (on Uni Hill) 4.54%
See a map of turnout by precinct

Boulder city council

Mark Wallach: 17,683
Matt Benjamin: 16,501
Nicole Speer: 16,287
Lauren Folkerts: 15,763
Tara Winer: 15,205
Michel Christy: 14,558
Dan Williams: 13,614
Steve Rosenblum: 13,309
David Takahashi: 8,429
Jacques Decalo: 3,908

Ballot Question 300 (Bedrooms Are For People)

Yes…47.67% (15,756)
No….52.33% (17,296)
Total ballots counted: 33,052

Ballot Question 301 (Fur ban)

Yes…51.01% (16,163)
No….48.99% (15,523)
Total ballots counted: 31,686

Ballot Question 302 (CU South)

Yes…43.22% (13,871)
No….56.78% (18,224)
Total ballots counted: 32,095

Ballot issue 2I (Community, Culture, Safety, Resilience tax extension)

Yes…86.32% (27,904)
No….13.68% (4,421)
Total ballots counted: 32,325

Ballot issue 2J (Debt related to tax extension)

Yes…80.49% (25,406)
No….19.51% (6,159)
Total ballots counted: 31,565

Ballot issue 2K (Council subcommittees)

Yes…75.04% (21,154)
No….24.96% (7,036)
Total ballots counted: 28,190

Ballot issue 2L (Petition signatures)

Yes…87.02% (26,458)
No….12.98% (3,947)
Total ballots counted: 30,405

Ballot issue 2M (Council pay schedule)

Yes…79.8% (24,484)
No….20.2% (6,196)
Total ballots counted: 30,680

Above are the official results, which represent the will of the people — at least the ones who showed up to vote.

Turnout in off-year elections is famously low, and not just in Boulder. Nationally, about 60% of the voting population cast ballots in presidential elections; just 40% do in off-year midterm contests, according to Fair Vote.

Congressional races drive local participation. In 2018, for example, Boulder County’s turnout was 82.35% and the city of Boulder neighborhood with the lowest turnout still saw more than 62% of residents cast a ballot. This year, with no state or national elected officials on the ballot, turnout was just 47.3% countywide, and the lowest-participation precinct posted voter turnout in the single digits, below 5%.

Those super low-participation years — every other odd year (2017, 2019, 2021 and so on) — are when Boulder’s city council gets elected.

An analysis by Boulder Beat found that 25% or fewer of active, registered voters picked Boulder’s elected officials this year. That can’t all be blamed on low turnout: the city’s at-large plurality system, in which the top five vote-getters win seats, means that voters split their picks among 10 or sometimes 15 candidates, giving each candidate a lower share.

Here, a look at how many votes each candidate and issue won from this year’s voters and from active voters in the city overall. To avoid confusion, final results of each contest are shown in bold.

Council candidates

Mark Wallach: Won with 17,683 votes
– 52.4% of voters in this election
– 25.7% of active Boulder voters

Matt Benjamin: Won with 16,501 votes
– 48.9% of voters in this election
– 24% of active Boulder voters

Nicole Speer: Won with 16,287 votes
– 48.2% of voters in this election
– 23.6% of active Boulder voters

Lauren Folkerts: Won with 15,763 votes
– 46.7% of voters in this election
– 22.9% of active Boulder voters

Tara Winer: Won with 15,205 votes
– 45% of voters in this election
– 22.1% of active Boulder voters

Michael Christy: Lost with 14,558 votes
_ 43.1% of voters in this election
– 21.1% of active Boulder voters

Dan Wiliams: Lost with 13,614 votes
– 40.3% of voters in this election
– 19.8% of active Boulder voters

Steve Rosenblum: Lost with 13,309 votes
– 39.4% of voters in this election
– 19.3% of active Boulder voters

David Takahashi: Lost with 8,429
– 25% of voters in this election
– 12.2% of active Boulder voters

Jacques Decalo: Lost with 3,908
– 11.6% of voters in this election
– 5.7% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issues

Ballot question 300 – Bedrooms Are For People

No: 17,296 voters
– 51.2% of voters in this election
– 25.1% of active Boulder voters

Yes: 15,756 votes
– 46.7% of voters in this election
– 22.9% of active Boulder voters

Ballot question 301 – Fur ban

Yes: 16,163 votes
– 47.9% of voters in this election
– 23.5% of active Boulder voters

No: 15,523 votes
– 46% of voters in this election
– 22.5% of active Boulder voters

Ballot question 302 – Let the Voters Decide on CU South

No: 18,224 votes
– 54% of voters in this election
– 26.5% of active Boulder voters 

Yes: 13,871 votes
– 41.1% of voters in this election
– 26.5% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issue 2I – Infrastructure sales tax extension

Yes: 27,904 votes
– 82.6% of voters in this election
– 40.5% of active Boulder voters

No: 4,421 votes
– 13.1% of voters in this election
– 6.4% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issue 2J – Debt related to tax extension

Yes: 25,406 votes
– 75.2% of voters in this election
– 36.9% of active Boulder voters

No: 6,159 votes
– 18.2% of voters in this election
– 8.9% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issue 2K – Council subcommittees

Yes: 21,154 votes
– 62.6% of voters in this election
– 30.7% of active Boulder voters

No: 7,036 votes
– 20.8% of voters in this election
– 10.2% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issue 2L – Petition signatures

Yes: 26,458 votes
– 81.3% of voters in this election
– 39.9% of active Boulder voters

No: 3,947 votes
– 11.7% of voters in this election
– 5.7% of active Boulder voters

Ballot issue 2M – Council pay schedule

Yes: 24,484 votes
– 72.5% of voters in this election
– 35.5% of active Boulder voters

No: 6,196 votes
– 18.3% of voters in this election
– 9% of active Boulder voters

— Shay Castle, @shayshinecastle

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Elections

3 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Mark Wallach was the one person who I hoped would disappear. He refused to ever meet with me regarding the Muni or carbon reduction. Claims that he listens to the public are false. He resides in an echo chamber and only hears what he wants to hear.

  2. That was a very dramatic late shift. From Thursday 9am to Thursday 5pm, the top 3 Coalition candidates picked up about 25% more votes than the equivalent PBC-endorsed candidates. I’m guessing older people vote and get counted first, with younger people later, but I don’t know. Thank you everyone who voted!

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