• Early voting begins in Georgia

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - A steady stream of voters cast their ballots Monday, marking the beginning of early voting for the state of Georgia in a hotly contested Nov. 4 general election.

    The election includes tight races, including for governor and the U.S. Senate.

    Any voter registered in Georgia can vote early. Voters can see personalized sample ballots, verify their registration status and find early voting polling locations on the Secretary of State’s “My Voter Page” website.

    Information about local elections can also be found on the state’s “GA Votes” mobile apps.

    Channel 2’s Sophia Choi spoke to voters at a DeKalb County polling place in Decatur Monday.

    “I wanted to make sure that I cast my vote, just in case anything else comes down the road on November the fourth,” said early voter Robin Red.

    Jerry Gonzales, Executive Director with the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials, also voted Monday.

    “Latinos in particular face a special difficulty with the citizenship verification that the state does have, so that’s why we are encouraging people to vote early,” said Gonzales.

    Weekend voting is another option for those who say work gets in the way of casting votes. DeKalb County polling stations will now be open on Sundays.

    “You have people that work a lot and Sunday is mainly some people’s down time, and that will give them an opportunity to vote,” said voter Jacklyn Madden.

    Polling places say they do not know what turnout to expect for early voting.

    “We know that there are several churches that are talking about having campaigns to bring people out. There’s discussions about busing people and so we’re excited about any opportunity to allow people to cast their ballots,” said DeKalb County voter registration and elections director Maxine Daniels.

    This year the election board is getting social, asking voters to post selfies with their stickers on social media along with #PostThePeach.

    How do I know if I'm registered?

    Be proactive. Check the online secretary of state’s website or directly contact your local election office.

    What to bring with you

    Georgia requires voters to show photo identification when they vote in person. Approved forms of identification include a Georgia driver’s license, even if it’s expired; a state-issued voter identification card; a valid U.S. passport; or a valid U.S. military photo ID.

    Runoffs

    Georgia requires election winners to receive a majority of the vote — you’ll often hear politicos refer to this margin as “50 percent plus one (vote).” Several key races this fall have more than two candidates, making runoff elections possible.

    It’s important to note that Georgia keeps separate election schedules for state and federal races. It is therefore possible to have runoffs on separate days: Dec. 2 for state and local races, including governor; and Jan. 6 for federal races including the U.S. Senate.

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