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Early voters filing into election offices in Douglas, Sarpy counties

Posted at 4:40 PM, Oct 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-30 17:40:14-04

A steady stream of early voters have been filing into local election commission offices, all looking to beat those Election Day lines next Tuesday.

"It is absolutely imperative to get out and vote. This is our way being able to choose who we want to represent us, and I feel very strongly about this," said early voter Kim Bradshaw.

The Douglas County Election Commission said the push for early voting is gaining momentum, before the peak rush that's expected the last three days of early voting.

Continuing coverage: Election 2018

"So Douglas County has seen an uptick in early voting over the last midterm in 2014," said Brian Kruse, Douglas County Election Commission. "In 2014, we had a total of 45,000 early voting ballots; and this time around, we have already seen 76,000 gone out, and we've got a week left of in-person voting."

The Sarpy County Election Commission is also seeing an increase.

"We have also seen historic numbers for that," Sarpy County Election Commissioner Michelle Andahl said. "For the election so far, we have had 24,000 people request an early voting ballot; we have had 3,000 people come into the office and vote so far; and we've had about 15,000 of those votes returned." 

And a record number of voters in Sarpy County are now registered to vote: more than 113,000 in total.

"One of the really exciting segments is that we have a large number of first-time voters, Andahl said. "We have over 1,200 voters that are 18, and this is the first election they participate in."

A sign that in this election cycle, people are unified on at least one issue: getting out the vote.

"We have seen an incredible amount of voters on a daily basis, in and out of our office doors, so it's a very different election cycle," Andahl said. "And it's exciting to see there's such excitement and involvement."