HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Early voting continues this weekend in the Pioneer Valley.
Several western Massachusetts communities had their polls open around 7:30 Saturday morning with a steady stream of people coming in.
Around 10:30 Saturday morning here at Holyoke City Hall every single polling station is packed with people filling out their ballots. The major factor bringing them out this early is the convenience.
Lisa Wong of Holyoke told 22News, “It means that I got to vote in person because I’ll be on vacation on voting day so I thought it was important to come out and do my thing.”
Massachusetts adopted early voting legislation passed in 2014, but the current presidential election is the first in which it is occurring.
But this year’s questions on the ballot also have people engaged.
“Not just an important presidential race but there are five great ballot questions very important for the Commonwealth, things that I feel we all have a stake in,” said Maurice Bresnahan of Holyoke.
Some families 22News spoke with made a group effort to go out and vote together “Because my daughter dragged me out to vote.”
There is still some worry that the convenience of early voting could open room for more mistakes when it comes time for the final tally. “It’s okay as long as it’s straight and doesn’t get screwed up like out in Chicago and those places you know.”
Anyone that votes early puts their ballot into an affidavit envelope and sign it saying they are who they say they are. Those ballots are locked in a vault until Election Day and are sorted by ward and precinct where they are processed.
Some have also expressed concern that they don’t have to show an ID to cast a ballot. “It is the state law that we are not actually allowed to ask people for their ID unless they are an inactive voter. An inactive voter is somebody that hasn’t voted in four years or who hasn’t turned back their census in two.” Said Holyoke City Clerk Brenna Murphy.
The early voting period ends November 4th.