LAS VEGAS (KSNV) — According to the Clark County Registrar of Voters office, nearly a quarter of a million Southern Nevadans had an early ballot ahead of the November 8 midterm election, whether by mail or in person.
“We're at about 140,000 received [mail-in] ballots, roughly,” said Joe Gloria. “And, early voting as of yesterday [Sunday] was a little over 100,000,” Gloria said. “We continue to receive mail and will be voting early in person through this Friday.”
In Henderson, the Galleria at Sunset shopping mall remains a popular location for early in-person voting. Voters there were finding a convenient mix of casting a ballot on a machine or using the location to drop off a mail-in ballot.
“I came to drop off my mail-in ballot,” said Carrie LeBlanc. “Thought it was a good excuse to come and check out the mall,” she added. LeBlanc says she had voted early in person at the mall in the past, but decided to fill out a mail-in ballot to avoid a long line. “It was during a presidential election, so I thought, why take a chance? I’ll come with my ballot in hand and hopefully just drop it off.”
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Amanda Nutting said her situation was completely the opposite. “I wasn't expecting to vote today. I was in going to mail in my ballot but there was no line so I said I'll get it done,” as she dropped off her young son at a children’s gym. “Last week there were lines going out the door.”
Others say their reason for casting early ballots in person varies. Karen Hernandez said she felt the ballot presented in the voting booth was easier to understand. “It's just an easier ballot. It's easier. Simpler. And I feel like I'm actually casting my vote. It’s getting submitted directly,” she said.
For voter Betty Hutchins, casting a ballot in person was more out of principle. “I don't agree with everybody getting a ballot in the mail. I feel there were too many problems that can occur from that.”
Joe Gloria said the dynamics of early voting have dramatically changed since the last mid-term election cycle because of the COVID-19 pandemic when many didn’t want to vote in person.
“We send mail ballots out to all voters now, and we've seen an increase in that turnout for mail,” Gloria said. “In 2018, we were focused on the early voting in person, which was what voters in Clark County had become accustomed to making use of, but now they can do both and they're choosing to do it at home for the most part. We'll see if those trends continue.”
Gloria reminds voters that in-person early voting ends Friday, with Election Day itself the following Tuesday, November 8.