Today is the last day of early voting in Tennessee. Turnout statewide broke the record (set in 2016) earlier this week, according to a statement from Secretary of State Tre Hargett’s office. And early turnout in Sullivan County was on track to see its early turnout record broken as well, Sullivan County Administrator of Elections Jason Booher said.
Election Day is Nov. 3.
“The all-time record for voter turnout of 66,439 was set in the November 2016 presidential election,” Booher told the Times News on Tuesday. “We are on track to exceed the early voting turnout of November 2016.”
Booher noted that through Monday, more than 42,670 in-person and by-mail ballots had been cast.
He said voters are encouraged to cast their ballot during early voting for several reasons.
“We do not know what the weather will be, but it is likely voters will need to stand outside their assigned polling location as a result of social distancing,” Booher said. “Unfortunately, many voters do not update their address with the election commission when they move. It is a felony offense when a voter does not provide their current legal residence when voting. The process of changing an address on Election Day is not as efficient as it is during early voting. Unlike early voting, voters with an address change will likely be directed to a different polling location, and as a result the time required to cast a ballot is extended for everyone.”
Voters that choose to vote on Election Day must vote at their assigned Election Day polling location.
“Many voters who have voted during early voting in past elections or had a family member or friend tell them where they voted during early voting arrive at an early voting location only to be directed to their assigned Election Day polling location,” Booher said. “Voters are encouraged to review their registration status and Election Day polling location by using the voter lookup tool at www.scelect.org. All three of our early voting locations serve as Election Day polling locations. Unless these locations are the assigned Election Day polling location for a voter, they cannot vote there.”
Early voting locations for Sullivan County:
• Sullivan County Election Commission Office, 3258 Highway 126, Suite 103, Blountville
• Civic Auditorium, 1550 Fort Henry Drive, Kingsport
• Slater Community Center, 325 McDowell St., Bristol
Hours at all three early voting locations are: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Early voting locations for Hawkins County:
• Church Hill Rescue Squad, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
• Rogersville Courthouse, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Early voting locations for Washington County:
• The former ACE Hardware, 220 N. 2nd Ave., Jonesborough
• Princeton Arts Center, 2516 E. Oakland Ave., Johnson City
• Johnson City Fire Station 8, 106 Gray Commons Circle, Gray
Hours at all Washington County early voting locations are: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Statewide, a record-breaking 1,808,546 voters had cast their ballots for the Nov. 3 presidential election by the end of the day on Monday, according to Hargett’s office, which meant turnout surpassed the previous record set during the 2016 presidential election when 1,689,989 Tennesseans voted early or absentee by-mail.
“This election, Tennesseans are engaged and are taking advantage of the convenience of early voting,” Hargett said. “In the final days of early voting as well as on Election Day, Tennesseans can cast their votes in a clean, safe, and secure environment.”
While visiting the polls, Tennesseans are encouraged to wear a face covering and maintain a six-foot distance from poll officials and other voters.
For more information about early voting in Tennessee, go to GoVoteTN.com or call the Division of Elections toll-free at (877) 850-4959.