> SOUTHERN INDIANA —
CLARK COUNTY EARLY VOTING
About 7,000 ballots were cast before Election Day during the 2008 presidential election in Clark County, and this year’s election has a chance of meeting or even exceeding that.
“I think we’re going to push it really tight,” said Jim Lisanby, Democratic Party appointment to the Clark County Board of Elections. “With what we’ve got going in, I bet we had 300 or better [ballots cast] today. We’ve been real steady today.”
“We probably, today, went over 5,000,” said Gary Law, Republican appointment to the board.
Clark County Clerk Barbara Haas said that while walk-in early-voter turnout is down, the number of mailed-in absentee ballots has increased over 2008. Lisanby estimated voters at the Clark County Government Building waited between 15 and 20 minutes to cast ballots in person on Wednesday.
“It’s not anything near what it was like in ‘08,” Haas said. “In ‘08, some of them waited for hours. And they didn’t complain.”
Haas believes that the number of workers processing ballots contributed to the shortened wait. There are five teams, consisting of a member of each of the two major parties, handling the ballots.
“They’re processing them faster because there’s more people working,” Haas said.
The clerk’s office will be open for early voting today through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Monday from 9 a.m. to noon. Haas said Saturday could be busy, depending on the weather forecast on Tuesday, and added that voter turnout on Election Day could be down if the weather is bad.
“People don’t like to stand in that weather and wait to vote, and a lot of the time they’re standing outside,” she said.
A few voters have been turned away for lack of a photo I.D., Lisanby said. Casting a ballot early is just like going to the polls on Election Day. Identification cards must include the name, date of birth, a photo and an expiration date. Cards can be expired, but the expiration date can’t be before Nov. 2, 2010.