Crowds at First Lutheran polls
Are you voting today, or were you among the more than 46 million Americans who voted ahead of Election Day?
The polling place at First Lutheran Church in Janesville was busy at about 10 a.m., but the flow was steady. The line was out the doors, but my wife and I quickly moved inside as a poll worker asked us which ward we voted in and told us which line to join in the hallway inside. Wards 14-18 vote at First Lutheran. We had a nice chat with neighbor Dave Peterson, and that helped pass the time. I was voter No. 391 in Ward 14 (Voting at about the same time in the April election, I was voter No. 175.).
We were back to the car in about 25 minutes. Maybe there’s a morning rush as people try to beat the rain and even a bit of snow that might come later today. Poll worker Roger Streich told me the line stretched toward the parking lot when they opened the doors at 7 a.m.
Polls will stay open until 8 p.m. If you’re standing in line by 8 p.m., you will be allowed to vote.
--Don’t wear political clothing and paraphernalia to a polling place, or the chief election inspector may ask you to remove or cover them up.
--You don’t need an ID to vote, though you will be asked to sign the poll list and provide your address.
--If you spot what you believe is voter fraud, voter intimidation, electioneering or misconduct by election officials, remain civil and contact the chief inspector. As Rock County Clerk Lori Stottler suggests, those in charge can’t solve a problem they don’t hear about.
--State law has changed, and you no longer can make one mark on a ballot to vote a straight-party ticket. Instead, you must vote separately for a candidate in each race.
--If you haven’t registered, you can do so today at the polls. You’ll need identification with your current address, such as a Wisconsin driver’s license, phone bill, utility bill or rent receipt. If you’re not sure if you’re registered or where to vote, click on myvote.wi.gov.
Please don’t let the lines or the weather deter you from doing your civic duty!