East Bay voter turnout could be bigger than ever

MARTINEZ, Calif. (KGO) -- The last minute voter registration rush is underway with people facing a midnight deadline, and registration numbers are already hitting a milestone. Back in May, California had 17.9 million registered voters, which is about 72 percent of eligible adults.

In September, that number jumped to 18.2 million registered voters, outnumbering the total population of 46 states.

With the clock ticking on the deadline to register, phones were ringing and voters were streaming into the Contra Costa County elections office in Martinez, Calif.

RELATED: California Voter's Edge Election Guide

County Clerk Joe Canciamilla says this year voter turnout in the East Bay could be bigger than ever.

He expects 10,000 people to register Monday alone.

"There's a lot more this year. We're seeing higher numbers," he said. "We'll be at the highest the county's ever been. We'll be at the highest the county's ever been. We'll be at over 600,000 registered voters by the time it's all processed."

An all time high is also expected in San Francisco. An official estimates the city will hit 515, 000 registered voters by the end of the day.

In Alameda County, registration is also up from 810,000 registered voters in 2012 to to 874,000 registered voters this year.

At UC Berkeley, volunteers with clipboards tracked down students, promising to help them get registered in just a matter of minutes.

"It's so important people are engaged and participate in our democracy, and voting is just such a crucial way of doing that."

It's better late than never for graduate student Cesar Rojas, who waited until the last minute to change his address.

"I think it's important for everybody to be concerned about our future and who's going to run the country," Rojas said.

RELATED: Today is the last day to register to vote in California

Elections officials say, while the focus has been on the Presidential race there are 17 statewide propositions and other local races that will play a major role in this election year.

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