Poll workers help voters on Nov. 4 at the Hyattsville Public Library in Hyattsville, MD.
Voters in Prince George’s County hit the ground running by casting their ballots early on Election Day.
At the Hyattsville Public Library in Hyattsville, there were short lines of Maryland voters as the polls opened at 7 a.m. The early voting time gives residents an opportunity to vote before they go to work and start the rest of their day.
Charles Duke, a local resident, was first in line.
“I don’t want to deal with the lines and waiting after work,” Duke said. “I like to vote early.”
Merritt Hinton, who has been working at the polls for 30 years, said the library does not usually have a tremendously high turnout during the elections because there are so many other poll locations close by.
“The rush is typically in the morning before work, or around the late afternoon when people start getting off,” Hinton said.
Because of the fast-moving lines, most voters were able to get in and out fairly quickly, except for one.
Camille Brooks, a Hyattsville resident, has been voting at the Hyattsville Public Library location for 13 years. She came to vote with her son, who is a first-time voter, but was told she was voting in the wrong precinct. Her son, who at 18 was voting for his first time, was able to vote in this location though they live in the same household.
“They changed my precinct with no notice,” Brooks said. “I’ve always voted here and it’s been great, but I don’t understand why they told me I couldn’t vote here when I’ve always voted here.”
Brooks was sent to a Presbyterian church down the street, but was sent back immediately. She was able to vote at the library after the church sent her back.
“I knew I wouldn’t feel like coming back after work, plus I had my son with me, and I wanted to show him how important it is to not give up and vote,” Brooks said.
As the early morning rush died down, residents of Hyattsville continued to flow in and cast their ballots for the next governor of Maryland.