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Thursday May 6th, 2021 11:40AM

Election 2020: Few lines as voters go to the polls in Georgia

By AccessWDUN Staff

Click the photo above to open a gallery of photos from the polls today.

AccessWDUN will be visiting voting precincts across North Georgia throughout Election Day. Polls across the state opened at 7 a.m. and will remain open until 7 p.m. Join us at 7 p.m. for full coverage of election results at AccessWDUN. on-air at WDUN AM 55 and FM 102.9, or streaming online or with our AccessWDUN streaming app.

 

UPDATED 6:05 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3 

There was a steady flow of voters in Oakwood at the Oakwood I precinct on Railroad Street today, according to poll manager Robert Bellair.

Bellair said lunchtime numbers were down, like many other precincts in Hall County today, but otherwise they had a steady flow of voters in and out. He said they expected numbers to taper off as they approached 7 p.m.

Even City Councilman Stephen Hendrix made sure to cast his ballot alongside his family at the Oakwood Community Building. He described the process as quick, and he said he was pleased with how poll workers were handling things.

Social distancing measures were in place, with X’s taped to the sidewalk and a poll worker acting as a gate keeper when the precinct reached capacity. 

— Alyson Shields

 

UPDATED 4:55 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

There were no lines at the Brenau Downtown Center in Gainesville. In fact, there were no voters at all.

Despite the lull, poll manager Latoya Castillo said there was a line when the location opened at 7 a.m. and couple of bursts throughout the day. 

“Everybody was well equipped and ready for the rush to come in,” Castillo said.

Voter Amy Kempton said her experience was very quick and easy, and there was no line when she went in.

— Tara Brolley


UPDATED 4:50 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3.

At the Habersham South Precinct in Cornelia, Manager Dave Clark said things have gone smoothly with the only line occurring when the polls opened for the day.

“There have been a couple of times people might have had to wait a little,” Clark said, noting he does not anticipate more than 10-15 voters in the building even during any possible evening rush.

Voter Tennille Jackson of Cornelia and others said it could not have been easier to cast a ballot, adding they were in and out in less than five minutes.

More than 60% of Habersham County voters cast their ballots prior to Election Day.

— Rob Moore


UPDATED 3:18 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

Election day has been slower than anticipated, according to Bob Herrin, manager of the Church at Southside polling place in South Jackson County. 

According to Herrin, voters have been coming in at a steady pace, but there have been a few hectic periods. 

Jackson County voter Brenda Basabe said the voting process was easy and organized, and it only took about 10 minutes to vote. 

Herrin said the longest anyone has had to wait today was around 20 minutes, and that's because they are overstaffed for the amount of voters that have shown up so far today.

— Austin Eller

 

UPDATED 2:25 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

More than 4,000 voters are on the voter roster at the Chestatee precinct in northwest Hall County, but just after 2 p.m. today, only 351 voters had cast Election Day ballots.

Poll Manager Karen Hoyt said there were 40 people waiting for the doors to open at Chestatee High School at 7 a.m.; they started lining up at 6:15 a.m. 

Hoyt said she was a little disappointed at the turnout, but she was thankful for the extra poll workers helping to operate the precinct. Plus, the new voting equipment was running without a hitch.

"This is our third time with the [new] machines, so we're familiar with the machines, so it's been a very easy process," Hoyt said.

A steady trickle of voters continued into mid-afternoon. First-time presidential voter Wesley Majors, Jr., 25, said he almost didn't show up, but decided on Election Day he needed to cast a ballot. 

"I felt like whatever was going to happen would happen," Majors said, but then he had a change of heart.

"I thought, well, maybe I should just go and have my say-so," Majors said. "I'm just hoping the outcome is good, but really it's all just in God's hands."

— B.J. Williams


UPDATED 1:40 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

Despite the lunch hour, lines were non-existent at the Dawson County Central Precinct. According to Glenda Ferguson, Director of Dawson County Board of Elections and Voter Registration, by 1 p.m. over 1,300 people had already voted in-person across all precincts.  

Ferguson said the turn out has been quieter than she expected. She said that while early voting was heavier than normal, mail-in ballots, along with today’s voting numbers, have been lower than she expected. “We had a lot of cancellations for mail-in ballots,” she says. “We did well with advance voting, but the paper ballots have been less than in the primary. That’s been a little surprising.”

In the last election the county had 81% of its voters turn out. However, this years numbers are not looking as promising. “If it keeps staying this slow, we might not make that same percentage this year,” says Ferguson. “I expected to be full all day so it’s surprised me a little bit. Maybe everyone wanted to just vote early.” 

— Kimberly Sizemore


UPDATED 11:25 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

BUFORD - While most of the voters this morning at the Hamilton Mill voting precinct in Gwinnett County were in and out with no issue, Gwinnett County resident Laura Stancil voiced her frustration over voter registration.
 
Stancil said that she was surprised to find out two weeks ago that her voter registration had been canceled without her knowledge.
 
"Even though I voted in the last election...somehow mine got in the system of not being processed, or something, so I submitted for a new registration and it hasn't been accepted yet," she said.
 
But Stancil's husband Daniel and Buford resident Tiffany McWhorter said that this time voting was the easiest they had seen in several times casting their ballot in Gwinnett County.
 
"I thought it was simple, easy and it was fun," Daniel Stancil said.
 
"It was very easy, very in and out, this is my third time voting in this location and it's the least amount of people that I've seen anywhere," said McWhorter.
 
Gwinnett County has 156 voting precincts, the largest number of any North Georgia county.
 
— Lauren Hunter
 

UPDATED 11:06 a.m. Tuesday Nov. 3

GAINESVILLE – Efforts have been ongoing to urge those living in urban neighborhoods to get to the polls for the November 3rd Presidential Election.  From the appearance of voters flowing through several city-central polling locations in Hall County the effort was working.

Five locations had been designated as “Gainesville”.  According to reports all five opened on time Tuesday morning and no problems were being encountered.

Gainesville 2, however, had a noticeable difference: between the parking lot and the “cozy” Fair Street Neighborhood Center main entry snacks and beverages were being served free of charge.

Ryan Crawford and Laura Colaninno had set up a table next to the sidewalk and were offering harried voters something to eat or drink.  “This year we have three comfort stations,” Colaninno explained.

Colaninno said the idea sprang out of long lines and long waiting times she encountered several years ago while attempting to vote.  She said the need for something to drink or to munch on came to her as a result of being hungry and thirsty and having nothing available.

Colaninno said the two other polling locations with similar provisioning were at Harmony Hall Baptist Church serving the Tadmore Precinct and at Gainesville 3 Precinct, working out of the First Church of the Nazarene on Otila Drive.

Colaninno explained that the outreach was privately funded and totally non-partisan.

Gainesville 2 poll supervisor Tori Evans said she liked the idea but hoped the expectation of long lines and long waiting times would not materialize.

— Marc Eggers

 

UPDATED 10:36 a.m. Tuesday Nov. 3

Riverbend Church on Cleveland Highway served as the voting location Tuesday morning for those living in the Whelchel precinct; just up the road Riverbend Elementary School was welcoming the young children of families who live in the Whelchel precinct.

That probably explained the number of parents with “kids-in tow” who moved quickly towards the doors of the voting location: they wanted to cast their ballot while also making sure their youngsters were not marked tardy for the start of another school day.

Poll Supervisor Elsie Bush scrambled to keep up with the pace of parents, and other voters on a tight schedule.  Bush’s efforts appeared to be paying dividends as people quickly completed the voting process.

Of the fifteen poll workers scheduled to help at Riverbend Church Tuesday morning only seven actually reported for duty according to the poll worker monitoring the entry door.

But everybody on campus knew the efforts were well worth it.  What they were doing was of huge importance and hopefully those “kids-in tow” were able, in some small way, to grasp the significance and privilege of choosing those who govern.

— Marc Eggers

 

UPDATED 10:15 a.m. Tuesday Nov. 3

There’s early voting, and then there is voting early.

Such was the case at the First Baptist Church of Lula as the sun had yet to crack the horizon but the near-full moon well-illuminated the parking lot shortly after 6 a.m. Tuesday morning.

Inside the church’s gymnasium lights burned brightly and poll workers sipped coffee, chatting amicably with one another.  This group was ready to go according to the poll supervisor.  “We are ready.  The machines have all been checked; all we’re waiting for is 7:00 o’clock to arrive.”

Outside the entry doors people queued up in “socially responsible fashion”.  Nearly forty Lula residents waited patiently; those who had not early voted wanted to vote early, to cast their ballots and head off to work.  

Hall County Sheriff’s Sergeant Seth Day walked among the parked cars outside the gymnasium, saying hello to those choosing to wait in the warmer conditions in their vehicles rather than standing in line.  He also checked on the poll workers inside the building to let them know he was there.

Election Day 2020 was about to begin.

— Marc Eggers

 

UPDATED 8 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3

A steady flow of voters — but no lines — this morning at the Gainesville V precinct at Lakewood Baptist Church.

A poll worker said staff had expected a line this morning when the polling place opened at 7 a.m., but by 7:30 a.m., only 19 people had cast ballots.

The check-in process was operating well, and there were no issues with machines. All poll workers were wearing masks or face guards. So were most voters.

— Mitch Clarke

This story will be updated throughout the day.

  • Associated Categories: Homepage
  • Associated Tags: Gwinnett County, voter turnout, Hall County , Lumpkin County , General Election , Election 2020
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