Election Day voting sees steady turnout

Published 7:01 am Wednesday, November 4, 2020

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The line stretched deep into the Holiday Inn and Convention Center as doors opened for Election Day voting Tuesday morning.

“It’s been a very steady turnout throughout the day,” said Austin City Clerk Ann Kasel. “We did have a line at 7 a.m., which we anticipated, and we got everybody through within 30 minutes. I don’t think there has been more than a 15-minute wait the entire day and we’ve seen lots of different people and lots of new registrations today. People who have never voted before are registering.”

Tuesday’s election marked the second time the Holiday Inn and Convention Center was used as a citywide polling location, a decision the city made in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As with the primaries, voters did not seem to mind the change.

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“It’s been really smooth,” Kasel said. “We’ve done a lot of curbside voting. That’s becoming more popular, where we’ll take the ballot out and two judges will go out and help people vote in the car for mask or mobility issues. We’ve had a lot of good feedback from people.”

According to Scott Felten, Mower County auditor/treasurer, as of Monday, 52.5 percent of Mower County and 58 percent of Austin registered voters already voted absentee.

Approximately 11,400 absentee and mail ballots have been accepted. The last day for in-person absentee voting was Monday, however, those with absentee ballots can still drop them off up until 3 p.m. today.