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Early voting sets records in Hamilton County, around the country

Monday is last day to vote at Board of Elections
Posted at 3:24 AM, Nov 05, 2018

NORWOOD, Ohio – Voters stood in line for as long as 2 ½ hours at the Hamilton County Board of Elections on Sunday to be part of a record-setting wave of early in-person voting here and around the country.

And there’s one more day of early voting Monday.

If you’re registered in Hamilton County, you can vote from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Board of Elections, 4700 Smith Road. If you're registered in another county, check with your county BOE office online.

The Hamilton County Board of Elections wasn’t able to provide a tally of its Sunday voters, but it said the count reached 21,000 on Saturday. Only 3,000 people voted in person before the 2014 election.

In-person and mail-in votes together have topped 95,000 in Hamilton County this year. If you have a mail-in ballot, it must be postmarked by Monday and mailed to the BOE to be counted. Or you can bring it in person to the Board of Elections before polls close Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.

The BOE stayed open past its 5 p.m. closing hour Sunday to accommodate all the people who got in line on time, as well as some late arrivals.

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Sherry Poland, director of the Hamilton County Board of Elections, attributes the increase not only to the hotly-contested midterms but also to the BOE’s move from downtown.

“A lot of it has to do with our new location here in Norwood. Center of the county. It's much more accessible. Plenty of free public parking," Poland said.

A five-story parking garage is right next door.  

RELATED: When, where and how to vote in the Tri-State.

Across the country, more than 30 million had cast early mail-in or in-person ballots as of Friday, according to ABC News. At least 28 states had surpassed their 2014 early votes. The total early vote in 2014 was 28.3 million.

Democratic and Republican analysts, along with independent political scientists, say the 2018 turnout could approach 50 percent, levels not seen for a midterm since the turbulent 1960s.