Early voters find delays, long lines

Originally Posted Online: Oct. 24, 2012, 7:10 pm
Last Updated: Oct. 24, 2012, 10:54 pm
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By Dawn Neuses, dneuses@qconline.com

Long lines and a paper jam slowed voting Wednesday at the Moline Public Library, one of five early voting sites in Rock Island County.

As many as 50 people were in the line leading through the lobby and into the room set up for voting. Those in line said were long waits.

Carol and Paul S. Erickson, both of Moline, said while leaving that they waited an hour and a half to cast ballots. "We were told a machine broke down," Mr. Erickson said, adding the line wasn't longer than it would be on election day. The difference is on election day, the polls are staffed heavier, he said.

Rock Island County Clerk Karen Kinney said it is true on election day the polls will be staffed heavier and each polling place will have more voting booths. She said there were lines at each of the five early voting sites Wednesday, something people should expect during a presidential election, she said.

"Everyone in line is calm and patient," she said.

She spent an hour and a half at the Moline library. She said people there waited an average of 53 minutes and there was not a voting machine down, only a paper jam that took a couple of minutes to fix.

Early voting began at five locations in Rock Island County Monday. Since then, approximately 7,000 people have voted, Ms. Kinney said.

"One election day, the lines will be a lot longer and parking spaces a lot harder to find. A presidential election is always busy," Ms. Kinney said, adding the county opened three early voting sites in addition to the two it was mandated to have.

"Thank goodness they are able to vote here. If not, there would be some very long lines on election day," she said.

"Please be patient," Ms. Kinney advised those planning to vote early. "I am thrilled everyone is turning out to vote. I would be more concerned if no one was showing up."

Early voting began in Illinois on Monday and runs until Nov. 3, three days before the Nov. 6 election. There are five early voting locations in Rock Island County:

- Rock Island County Clerk's Office, 1504 3rd Ave, Rock Island, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday and 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Oct. 27 and Nov. 3.
- Western Illinois University, 3300 River Drive, Moline, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday
- Silvis City Council Chambers, 121 11th St., Silvis, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday
- Moline Public Library, 3210 41st St., Moline, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday
- Milan Municipal Building, 405 E. 1st St., Milan, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday

Grace registration runs into Nov. 3 and allows anyone not registered to vote to register at the Rock Island County Clerk's office. They must then vote straight after registering. Two forms of identification are required, and one must include the person's address.

Voters casting an early ballot must display a current driver's license, a state-issued ID card or another government-issued ID with a photograph.


Local events heading

  Today is Monday, April 21, the 111th day of 2014. There are 254 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The female sex seems to have gone crazy on the subject of dry goods. When high prices keep them from increasing their wardrobes, they turn to stealing. Yard goods, hats, shoes and other items are being picked up and carried home.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Members of Everts Commandery No. 18, Knights Templar, under Commander H.C. Cleaveland, marched from the Masonic Temple to Trinity Episcopal Church for their annual Easter services.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Nate Hultgren pitched the Augustana College baseball team to a 10-3 victory over Carthage, striking out 11 men and allowing only four hits.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Marvel Leonhardi, a Rock Island High School senior, was the winner of an essay contest on advertising sponsored by The Argus and Advertising Age, a national advertising publication.
1964 -- 50 years ago: The Augustana College band drew a crowd of 1,200 people for its annual home concert in Centennial Hall. The size of the crowd was indicative of the fact the band is rapidly approaching the stature of the Augustana Choir.
1989 -- 25 years ago: A benefit to raise money for extracurricular activities in the Rock Island Milan School District will be April 27 at the Quad City Downs harness race track. People buying $17.50 tickets to the second annual "Night at the Quad City Downs" will be entitled to an evening of harness racing and dinner.

(More History)