PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The City of Philadelphia is gearing up for the start of early voting. Election officials say they are making it easier for residents to cast their ballots.
The whole concept of voting by mail or in-person does sound pretty novel, especially in this region of the country.
Seven temporary election sites will open up Tuesday morning, including the Liacouras Center and inside City Hall.
Election 2020 brings something new to the city.
“Which is a new way for Philadelphians to go and be able to vote,” said Lisa M. Deeley, the chair of the Philadelphia City Commissioners.
Seven of 17 satellite election offices will open up Tuesday morning and will allow voters who wish to cast their ballots early an opportunity to do so in order to avoid election day crowds.
Room 140 inside of City Hall was busy with last-minute preparations. Once these temporary offices open up, they will remain open seven days a week through Nov. 3, serving many functions.
“It’s a unique opportunity for people to vote in-person, by mail. They can also register to vote at these sites, or if they are already receiving a mail-in ballot already through the mail, they can use these sites as a place to drop off the ballot,” said Deeley,
If needed, a voter can request a mail-in ballot on the spot, fill it out and hand it back to submit their vote all from one location.
‘We are already putting the pieces in place so that when Election Day arrives we can start counting ballots as quickly as possible,” said Al Schmidt, vice chair of the Philadelphia City Commissioners.
The votes sent either by mail or on mail-in ballots submitted in-person won’t be counted until Election Day. That process will take place inside of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
“The real crunch is how many envelopes can we open and how many ballots can we count as quickly and accurately as possible,” Schmidt said.
It’s a duty of diligence. We are told that the tallying of votes could continue 24 hours a day until each and even one is counted.
“Some states are well established in their off-site or their early voting locations. this is a new wrinkle for Pennsylvania and another thing that they have to pay attention to make sure their vote counts,” said David Thornburg.
Pennsylvania was the first state to offer any kind of absentee or mail-in voting. they did so to accommodate soldiers fighting in the war of 1812, other states did not join Pennsylvania until the Civil War.
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