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Election Day Poll Workers Brace For Crowds

As voting began Tuesday, poll workers were bracing for what is expected to be record turnout throughout the day.

"I honestly have no idea what today is going to be like," said Janet Jai, a judge of elections in Pittsburgh. "Usually, there are slow times in the day. This year, we don't expect to have any slow times."

Constance Mitts, an election worker in Stonelick Township in Ohio's Clermont County, said lines started to form early. "We have never had, in all the years I've been doing this, anybody out there, say, 45 minutes early like we started this morning," she said.

In New Jersey's Raritan Township, about 200 people voted within the hour after the polls opened, "which is most unusual for this district," poll worker Marty McInerney said. He said having extra helpers, including two students who volunteered, allowed him to assign some poll workers to crowd control, monitoring the lines to make sure they moved in an orderly fashion.

Jim Hagerman in Chelsea, Mich., southwest of Detroit, said the nearly 100 people waiting to vote in his precinct before the polls opened didn't look upset. "They look like they're ready and know what they want to do, and they're just waiting for us to open the doors," he said.

In Roanoke, Va., "we are slammed," chief poll worker Pamela Casey said of her precinct. "And this is exactly what I expected."

"The last presidential election was busy, but we have definitely got more voters, and they are definitely coming out in force," she said.

Alan Glover, the clerk-recorder in Carson City, Nev., kept the coffee flowing Tuesday morning as polls opened at the Carson City Community Center. He said poll workers there have been hearing the reports of long lines at precincts across the country. "Everyone goes, 'OK, it's coming. Here we are. It's the big day," Glover said.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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