In Nevada, precinct with 0 votes was a singular puzzle
Nev. — What if a neighborhood precinct was voting in Nevada’s presidential caucuses and nobody came?
Democrats in one county were left scratching their heads about the possibility they had stumbled onto a phantom precinct during the party’s third-in-the-nation presidential contest.
Not only did no one cast a ballot during early voting in precinct No. 7321, but noout, body from there showed up to participate at Feb. 22’s caucus site at the University of Nevada, Reno, where hundreds gathered from six other precincts in Washoe County.
Worried about the potential for a meltdown like the one that delayed official results in Iowa, site leader Austin Daly said they were prepared for the possibility of glitches with the iPads that were used to tabulate results or other softwarerelated emergencies.
“And I expected big turnRENO, but never thought there would be a precinct with zero votes,” said Daly, head of the UNR Young Democrats.
Amy Travis, a Bernie Sanders supporter from a neighboring precinct, was given the task of filling in the “zeros” next to all the candidates’ names in precinct 7321.
But she thought it was strange.
She looked up a map of the precinct on her cellphone and found it consists entirely of a 600-acre county park just west of the Reno campus.
It turns out there is one registered voter who lives at the lone residence in the precinct: a park employee.
The employee didn’t return messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.
Robert Holland, ranger of Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, confirmed the employee lives at the residence that’s part of an old frontier ranch homestead, which can be rented for weddings and other special events.
State party officials determined the precinct’s lone delegate would be recorded as “uncommitted” at the precinct caucus level but does not advance to the next round at the county convention.
Having few or no registered voters in precincts is not as unusual as it sounds in sparsely populated Nevada.
In fact, 108 of Washoe County’s 555 precincts have no registered voters, county Registrar of Voters Deanna Spikula said last week.
Rancho San Rafael Regional Park near Reno makes up an entire voting precinct, where just one person, a park employee, lives.