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Election Day in Lansing: Voters find it easy to practice social distancing

“Hopefully they all Early Voted,” says Toni Kennedy, Election Judge

by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (March 17, 2020) – Election Judges at polling places throughout Lansing have had plenty of opportunity to wipe down equipment, spray sanitizer, and socialize in between helping voters. By 12:30pm on Election Day, voter turnout was below three dozen for Precinct 43, whose polling place is First Church PCA. Results were similar on the north side of Lansing, at Reavis Elementary School and, reportedly, across Illinois.

“Hopefully they all Early Voted,” said Lansing resident and Election Judge Toni Kennedy. Kennedy also recited the measures available to minimize transmission of any germs, particularly COVID-19, equipment is being wiped down after each use, Election Judges are wearing gloves, hand sanitizer is available, and people are welcome to bring their own stylus for use on the screens. Voters who prefer a paper ballot are required to use the special pen available at polling places, but those pens are being wiped down after each use as well.

First Church PCA serves Precincts 43, 47, and 57 as a polling place. The selection of voting machines was wide open Tuesday afternoon. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Election Judge Toni Kennedy is doing her part to keep the democratic process clean. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Administrative Judge Denise Owens (left) counted 21 voters in her log almost six hours after the polls opened. The combined total from the Precinct 43 judges early Tuesday afternoon was 32. “That’s about two voters an hour,” said Election Judge Dewey Boshers (right). (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Greg Scherzinger normally takes advantage of Early Voting, but this year his work schedule kept him busy, so he voted on Election Day. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Over at Reavis Elementary School, which serves Precincts 13 and 61, the social distancing was equally extreme. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Election Judge Reginald Robinson demonstrated the Super Spray he’s using to keep the machines clean. “That stuff kills anything,” laughed his fellow judges Flora and Mary. “Even people almost.” (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)
Just before 1:00pm, voter Amber Turi placed her ballot in the ballot box. (Photo: Melanie Jongsma)

The polls are open until 7:00pm Tuesday. Use the link below to find your polling place:

Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma grew up in Lansing, Illinois, and believes The Lansing Journal has an important role to play in building community through trustworthy information.