Lubbock mayoral race sees sharp increase in voter turnout

Nov 4, 2020
Stephen Sanders and his campaign manager crowd around a phone to look at preliminary results for the mayoral race. At this point in the night Dan Pope has 56% of the votes.
Kaysie Ellingson

After a delay due to the pandemic, the Lubbock mayoral race garnered 500% more votes than the last time the office was up for election. 

Mayor Dan Pope earned a third two-year term with 56% of votes Tuesday night, according to unofficial, final results from the Lubbock County Elections Office. 

A total of 87,636 people voted between incumbent Pope and political outsider Stephen Sanders. That's 72% of total voter turnout, which shattered records for the city. Records show 120,882 people voted early, by mail or on election day, almost 66% of total registered voters. 

Sarah Self-Walbrick/Texas Tech Public Media

The first thing Nurse Lona Ashley said she does every shift is check charts to see who she is caring for that day. She pulls medications, puts on her protective equipment and spends hours with each of her patients. She bathes and feeds them. Doing what she can to make them comfortable.  


And when she does take a break? Ashley said she checks in with the families of her patients.  



Sarah Self-Walbrick/Texas Tech Public Media

The second half of Texas Tech University’s homecoming football game on Saturday just started. The home team is up by seven points and lines are starting to form at the bars on Broadway, right across the street from the university’s main entrance.  


Lubbock's trauma service area, which includes 21 other counties, hit an important mark Sunday and is now considered a region with high COVID-19 related hospitalizations. 

For the past week, more than 15% of total hospitalized patients have been diagnosed with COVID-19. On Sunday, that percentage hovered just under 20%, according to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services

Lubbock's region hit an important COVID-19 mark. Now what?

Oct 20, 2020
Weston Davis/Texas Tech Public Media

With one of the highest testing positivity rates in the country, Lubbock is now a COVID-19 hotspot and area hospitals are filling up. 



Dr. Mike Ragain, chief medical officer at University Medical Center, said his hospital hit a few grim milestones last week.

“In our hospital, we had a record number of COVID admissions,” Ragain said. “We also had a record number of COVID patients in the ICU. We had a record number of employees who were out because of COVID.”