Early voting has already begun in Marion county and will continue until Election Day. Photo courtesy of marketwatch.com.
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Butler students who registered to vote as a Marion County resident can vote on Nov. 3 at many locations in the local area.
On Election Day, all polling sites will open at 6:00 am and close at 6:00 pm.
Where to vote in Marion County
On Election Day, students can vote at Hinkle Fieldhouse, which will serve as a polling place. Other nearby locations include polling places in Broad Ripple and downtown, such as Lucas Oil Stadium and Broad Ripple high school.
There is also the opportunity for early voting in person. The Indianapolis City-County Building began taking ballots on Oct. 6 and will continue to do so through Nov. 2. The Krannert Park Community Center, MSD Lawrence Admin Building, Perry Township Government Center, St. Luke’s UMC and Warren Township Government Center will all be open for early voting from Oct. 24 to Nov 1.
Senior economics major Lilly Springer has voted early in Marion County in the past, but decided to request an absentee ballot in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In 2018, for both the primary and the general, I voted early at the City-County building,” Springer said. “Then for 2020, I didn’t want to congest that and wanted to make sure that I stayed away, especially being in a collegiate experience and around a lot of people.”
What to bring
Voters will be required to wear masks and present a valid photo ID upon check-in. This ID must be government issued, either by the State of Indiana or the United States, and have your name and photo as well as an expiration date.
What to do when you arrive
Voters should be prepared for long lines at polling places this year.
Alexa Knoderer, a senior secondary special education major, said she is used to lining up early in the morning when the polls open. Knoderer joined many other Americans waiting in lines of hundreds of voters in 2016.
“We open our polls at 6 just like everybody else, and my family all goes at 6 together as a family,” Knoderer said. “I was actually the youngest voter there [in 2016] in the morning and there was a big long line.”
When it’s your turn, you will check-in via an iPad containing voter registration records. The system then prints a ballot based on the address provided in your registration records. Voters will use a machine known as an ExpressVote to electronically select candidates. The ExpressVote will print a ballot for you to review and you will finish by inserting your ballot into the collection machine.
Marion County is experiencing a much larger demand for absentee ballots than in past election years, which some are concerned could cause problems for voters.
Unfortunately, Springer said she fears the surge in absentee ballot requests is hindering the effectiveness of the system.
“I was fine for the primary this year, but for the general, my absentee ballot never arrived, so I had to file paperwork to get a new absentee ballot, which I was just told was due today,” Springer said. “So I’m having some concerns that the system is overwhelmed, both at the Marion County board of elections and the post office because of continuous cuts to the post office as well as election funding in Indianapolis.”
Knoderer said she is concerned about voter suppression this election cycle, specifically due to lack of early-voting locations proportional to population and the fact that Indiana has decided not to honor COVID-19 as a reason to request an absentee ballot. Both state and local officials in Indiana have been known to alter numbers of voting precincts in order to favor their party.
“In Marion County specifically we have one of the, if not the, largest population in the whole state but we have one of the lowest number of early-voting precincts [proportionately to our population].” Knoderer said.
Knoderer and her family already have plans to vote together again this Election Day.
“I will absolutely be going to vote,” Knoderer said. “I think my family is going to early-vote actually because we are fortunate enough to have an early voting location in my hometown, actually at my dad’s workplace, it’s in our community education building.”
For more information visit https://vote.indy.gov.