CLEVELAND — Voters came out in droves to the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections to cast their ballots Friday, one of the last days left to vote early for the 2020 General Election on Nov. 3.
Early voters once again lined the streets around the BOE, stretching all the way to Chester Avenue and nearly to the I-90 exit ramp.
“We got up here pretty quickly! We started off all the way next to the freeway,” said Monica Lee, a voter from Cleveland.
“It's amazing the turnout for this election. I got here at 8:30, I've been in line over an hour and 10 minutes,” said Mark Cotman, another early voter.
Friday’s voters added to the impressive tally logged since early voting started on Oct. 6. On Thursday, 2,886 early voters cast their ballots, bringing the total to date to 44,852. To put that into perspective, the total number of early voters in the entire county four years ago was 38,413.
“I think everyone's just working great together,” said Kelsey Mooney, a voter from Broadview Heights.
“It's just so important. You know, with everything that's going on, and making sure that your vote actually is going to count,” Lee said.
Voters News 5 spoke to have different reasons for why they chose to cast their ballots ahead of Election Day.
“I wanted to come personally myself and fill it out myself,” Mooney said.
“Mostly because of work, it's not really good to do it on a Tuesday,” Robert Bantly, a voter from Parma, said.
“I just heard the news that it might take a long time for the day of voting, so I decided to try and do it early because I just wanted to get it done,” said Evan Poor, a voter from Cleveland.
Air Force veteran James Alves says he and his wife came out Friday for some extra voter insurance after his mail-in ballot arrived damaged.
“It was kind of waterlogged so I was worried that it might not be counted. So rather than not stand in line and have it not counted, I'd rather come down and make sure that it's counted,” Alves said.
Many voters said they were not surprised at the turnout because of what’s at stake during this election.
“It should be the turnout that we always have honestly, but obviously people are kind of riled on both sides of the issues so it's just good that everybody's out there actually expressing their opinion this time,” Poor said.
“I think we're excited this time to get out and vote. And we know the importance of casting our vote and what that's gonna do for the inner city and the communities,” Lee said.
For disabled voters, there is a separate line at the back of the BOE parking lot that is designated for disabled voters. There’s also a curbside option for people who are unable to stand in line.
Disabled voters can park in the board of elections parking lot, but it can only be accessed traveling south on East 30th Street.
Early, in-person voting hours can be found here.
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