In county, voters line up early
October 21, 2008
Early voting got off to a brisk start.
"I think it’s an awesome idea," Park City resident Anita Baer said before she voted on a touch-screen machine Tuesday morning. "I just didn’t want to stand in line."
Those who registered to vote by Oct. 6 can cast ballots at four locations, including: the Summit County Courthouse, 60 N. Main in Coalville, Park City Library and Education Center room 207 at 1255 Park Avenue, Kamas City Hall at 170 N. Main Street and the Sheldon Richins Building at 6505 Landmark Drive at Kimball Junction.
Early voting ends Oct. 31 and polls are open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
"It’s an awesome turnout," Chief Deputy Summit County Clerk Ryan Cowley said about more than 70 people in the Snyderville Basin who had voted Tuesday before noon.
People must show government-issued photo identification to vote early, he stressed.
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Wilma Larremore beamed Tuesday explaining her experience voting early at the Park City library, which is where she attended high school growing up in town.
"We’ve always done absentee voting," said Larremore, who usually leaves Utah each year to begin wintering in Arizona in October.
Larremore wouldn’t say who she picked for president.
But Parkite Carri Gibbs Luse said she supports Democrat Barack Obama. She also voted early to avoid long lines on Election Day.
"I think we need a change. This country has suffered under both of the Bush administrations and everybody’s energized and excited to express their views," Gibbs Luse said after voting Tuesday. "I feel Obama is the change this country needs to change the impression of our standing abroad."
Parkite Paul Schenk agreed America’s reputation overseas has suffered in the past eight years.
"I’m always voting for the loser in Utah," Schenk joked about Utah ranking as one of the reddest of Republican-leaning states.
Schenk said he voted for Obama over Sen. John McCain, the Illinois senator’s Republican rival in the race to become the next U.S. president.
Meanwhile, Park City resident Chris Meyer wouldn’t say who she voted for Tuesday.
"I voted for the best guy and I think it’s wonderful we have 10 days to vote early and we don’t have to have all the lines," she said. "I don’t care if I’m late opening my business, not today, this is too important."
This is one of the most historic presidential races she has ever voted in, Parkite JoAnn Hayes added.
"This one’s a little different because we have one woman running and one candidate with black ancestry," Hayes said. "It’s going to be different no matter who wins."
After voting early in Park City Tuesday, Tom Brennan said many national issues concern him. "The economy, the wars, how about those?" he asked.
"We had quite a few people here before 10 o’clock," said Cindy LoPiccolo, City Hall’s elections officer. "I opened early."
Frank Normile, organizer of the Park City Film Series, observed the voters as he left his Film Series office in the library.
"I’m curious to see if this early voting really changes things," Normile said. "Who in the hell devised our system of one-day voting in the middle of the week? I think it’s doing a disservice to the working man."
Elections in other countries often occur when most people are off work on the weekends, Normile explained.
"There is also a lot of weeklong voting and their turnout is better than ours," he said. "If you make it difficult on only one day and then there are lines, people walk away. Let’s make it easier and give people more time."