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Most voters report ease at the polls on Election Day

Published: Nov. 2, 2021 at 6:18 PM EDT
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HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) - After a month of early voting, it all comes down to Election Day and most voters we spoke with said the whole process was easier than expected.

“I was in there less than five minutes,” said Dee Mitchell.

That was a shared experience for many voters today at the Parks and Rec building off Staples Mill Road in Henrico.

After over a month of early in-person voting, the holdouts took to the polls. According to some, the typical staples of election day were missing.

“I’m surprised that there’s not more people standing outside trying to tell you who you should vote for,” said Emily Thomas.

Much of the smoothness of Election Day can be attributed to early voting, which has already pulled in over a million votes according to the Department of Elections’ Commissioner, Chris Piper.

In a crucial election such as this, some voters chose to make it a family affair, like Arlene Mountford who voted along with her children.

“I don’t normally vote, usually just the presidential elections, but I thought it was important this time to get in and vote,” she said.

Election Day had a lot of anticipation behind it, especially if for new voters like Aleksander Radoulov.

“This was a particularly exciting one to have as your first one voting. It felt pretty cool to have one extra candidate on a ballot there: Princess Blanding,” he said.

For another first-timer, Daryl Taylor, this was decades in the making.

“I’m 40 years old. As soon as I turned 18, I got into some trouble and I recently got my rights back to vote and it just feels good being able to get my voice heard.”

There were still some hiccups along the road on Tuesday including at least two ballot-counting machines jamming up in Henrico.

“Those ballots are collected still into a locked box, a monitored lockbox where they are kept until the machine is up and running,” Piper said. “Then the election officers will again run the machine. So everybody can be assured that their votes will be counted.”

Over in Chesterfield the precinct at Spring Run Elementary School lost power due to the failure of an underground cable that runs to the school.

Voters continued to make their votes using flashlights provided by the school and the voting machines were still online.

“Voting machines, as well as the electronic poll votes, have battery backups so voting continued as normal while the power is out,” Piper said.

A precinct at Johnson Elementary School also opened 10 minutes late due to a medical emergency.

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