Lack of ‘I Voted’ stickers disappoints some in Warren

By: Brian Louwers | Warren Weekly | Published November 11, 2016

 Some Warren residents were disappointed when they did not get an “I Voted” sticker after taking part in the Nov. 8 election.

Some Warren residents were disappointed when they did not get an “I Voted” sticker after taking part in the Nov. 8 election.

Photo by Brian Louwers

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WARREN — Millions of voters across the country cast ballots on Election Day. Many walked away with “I Voted” stickers. Some shared photos of their stickers on social media. Some even flashed them to get free stuff, like doughnuts or a piece of pie.

Most voters in Warren left the polls without stickers, and some were clearly disappointed.

“It’s a shame the City of Warren can’t allocate funds every four years, to have ‘I voted’ stickers for Presidential elections,” Robyn Lobsinger posted on the Warren Weekly’s Facebook page. She later added, “Why do we want them? Simple….they are visual reminders to rock your civic duty.”

Facebook user MJ Runyon Johnson posted that while she has never received a sticker in Warren, “A sticker is symbolic, patriotic. I think Warren should get with the program and spend a few bucks on stickers.”

Another Facebook user, Melynda Perkins Wendell, said she likes the stickers “so I’m not asked over and over if I voted!”

Others were not interested in the stickers or bothered that they didn’t get them.

“It’s not just in Warren, no stickers in Marysville either,” Tammie Balla-Monette posted on Facebook.

“I’ll take having the privilege to vote over a sticker any day,” Frank Wilkie shared.

Wendie Previdi added, “Voted at Carter. No sticker. None needed. I am not 5 years old at the dentist, lol.”

A quick call to Warren City Clerk Paul Wojno cleared up any confusion about what happened. The city didn’t run out of stickers. They’ve never had them.

Wojno did say some poll workers had bought them to give to voters, but no city funds were used.

That said, he plans to request an appropriation to order them for future elections.

“I’m very sympathetic to the fact that we had some calls. The demand yesterday was just overwhelming for it,” Wojno said. “We’ve never had anything like that in the past whatsoever.”

Wojno said the city would have needed more than 100,000 stickers to cover voters who took part in this year’s August and November elections.

“There is a cost associated with that,” he said.

According to Wojno, that cost could be between $5,000 and $7,000 to purchase stickers for an entire four-year cycle of elections, based on a quick analysis. That would cover all elections, from local and statewide contests to the presidential election cycle.

The appropriation would be requested through his office and would need the approval of the Warren City Council.

While taking photos of the ballot is prohibited, Wojno said he would also consider setting up a place outside of the city’s polling locations where people could take a photograph to share their pride in voting.

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