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Counter Points is written by WVXU Senior Political Analyst Howard Wilkinson. In it, he shares insights on political news on the local, state and national level that impacts the 2020 election. Counter Points is delivered once a week on Wednesdays and will cease publication soon after the November election is decided.

Early Voters In Ohio See Long Lines, Share Concerns About Mail-In Ballots

early voting
Bill Rinehart
The line to vote stretched past the Board of Elections building in Norwood, and around two corners, Tuesday morning, Oct. 6, the first day of early voting in Ohio.

Early voting has started in Ohio. The line Tuesday morning at the Hamilton County Board of Elections stretched around the block. Eleanor Morgan says she came so she wouldn't have to worry about big crowds on Election Day.

"We still have a crowd," she laughed. "But, I'll be working all day today, so I said, I'll go ahead and come before I have to go to work."

Morgan says she was also concerned about mailing in a ballot. That worry was echoed by Jim Fitzgerald.

"I don't trust the Republicans to run the Postal Service," the Madeira Democrat says. He says he usually votes early but this year, he really wanted to get it over with.

Several other voters say they were worried about mail-in ballots after reports of severe budget and service cuts at the U.S. Postal Service earlier this year.

Michelle Logsdon of Green Township says she didn't want to chance her ballot getting lost in the mail and was concerned about the pandemic.

"It definitely played a part. I've been social distancing. I do go to work every day. We wear masks at work. I wear a mask when I go to the grocery store or anywhere I need to go," Logsdon says. "I figured a nice like today, I'd rather go today than a month from today."

A pair of younger voters say they have concerns about mailing ballots, but it's because of unfamiliarity with the system.

"I've never mailed anything, so I'm not really sure how to do it," Courtnei Brown says. "It just feels like a big hassle to figure out how to mail stuff in correctly."

Her sister Camryn Brown says, "It's our first presidential election we can vote in, so we'd rather do it in person."

Boards of elections started mailing ballots today to those who requested them.

The Hamilton County Board of Elections reported heavy turnout among Democrats on Tuesday morning. For the first three hours of voting, 64% of those who cast ballots were registered Democrats.

Local Republicans are looking for a surge of their supporters, with an organized effort to vote Tuesday afternoon.

Bill Rinehart started his radio career as a disc jockey in 1990. In 1994, he made the jump into journalism and has been reporting and delivering news on the radio ever since.