CLEVELAND — With the close of early voting on Monday at 2 p.m., preparations are now underway for Election Day on Tuesday when polls will open at 6:30 a.m. at locations across the state.
Workers at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections saw something Monday they hadn’t seen all that much this election season, a line in the final hours of early voting. News 5 caught up with Brandy Mickens who just moved to Cleveland from Texas and brought her five-year-old daughter with her so she would know the importance of it.
"I don't care what the situation is if we have the opportunity to vote I just believe you should vote,” Mickens said. “I mean a lot of people have made a lot of sacrifices for us to vote so that's why we come out and vote every year, every election that we can."
Ernest Richey agrees, he came in from Parma to drop off his ballot. Even in quiet election years, he says it's his duty.
"I just have to do it, I just don't feel right if I don’t,” he said.
There was no burning single burning issue that captured his attention this year but in Cleveland, it was the mayor’s race between Kevin Kelley and Justin Bibb that has generated a lot of interest as well as the Cleveland Police reform measure known as Issue 24, that's what brought Tim out.
"Police should be in the neighborhoods and held accountable for what they do,” he said adding he felt it might drive a lot of people to the polls.
The Board of Elections is expecting a turnout of around 30% county-wide and about 20% in Cleveland. The good news is they averted a poll worker crisis in the last two weeks.
"There was some concern are we going to be able to get enough,” said Director Anthony Perlatti. “Because we kind of were borrowing from one city to fill another in previous elections, you can't do that in a county-wide but people did step up, and the closer we got to the election more and more people came forward."
And now they hope the voters will come forward. If you don't? Joshua Shabazz for one told News 5 he doesn't want to hear you complaining.
"A lot of things gotta change you know and so I figure if you don't say nothing you won't get nothing done,” he said.