Early voting begins in Madison County

Steve Gonzalez Oct. 14, 2008, 12:50pm

More than 2,000 voters turned up at the Madison County administration building to vote early today.

Early voting began today and runs until Oct. 30.

Doors opened at the administration building at 8:30 a.m. this morning and a line of voters was ready to cast their ballots.

Scott Davis, a bailiff at the courthouse, which is next door to the admin building, was just one of many people employed by Madison County who took advantage of the early voting.

"There is nothing that is going to happen in the next 22 days that is going to change my mind in the way I vote," Davis said.

Throughout the day, roughly 75 Madison County employees cast their votes during their lunch and other breaks. But, it was not just the county employees who voted early.

Allyson Taylor of Granite City, who turned 18 on August 5, cast her vote in her very first election.

Taylor is a student at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville. She came to the courthouse to pay a fine and decided to vote early.

"I saw the sign so I figured I should go ahead and vote today," Taylor said.

Helen Bates of Edwardsville voted early because she will be at her winter home in Arizona on Election Day.

"I used to vote absentee, but with early voting I do not have to worry about getting my ballot and send it in," Bates said.

Madison County Clerk Mark Von Nida has set up 16 early voting places throughout the county.

Von Nida has set up a Web site, www.madisonvotes.com, where residents can find other early polling places and their hours of operation.

The admin building will be holding early voting Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 6 p.m. On Saturday, voters can cast their ballots from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and also on Sunday from 9 a.m. until noon.

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