Secretary of State Michael Adams urges people to vote early, predicts highest turnout in nearly 30 years

Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 6:27 PM EDT
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - As the 2020 general election is just about one week away, Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams is encouraging Kentuckians to head to the polls early.

“Instead of one Election Day in November we’ve got 19 elections days for people to go vote in person," said Adams.

Early voting has been in progress for nearly two weeks. Adams says he is pleased with the turnout as more than one million Kentuckians have cast their ballots. This surpasses the number of voters in the primary election.

“I think we’re gonna have the highest turnout in Kentucky since 1992 and we’re on track to have the highest turnout nationally percentage wise since 1908," said Adams.

Adams did tell WYMT Eastern Kentucky is lagging behind the rest of the state. He says the state average is about 29% while Perry County is at 21% and Pike County at just 15%.

“We can’t have 85% of the voters show up on one day this time not with the kind of turnout we’re gonna have this election," Adams said.

Adams is encouraging people to take advantage of early voting saying it has never been easier to vote.

“It’s a one time opportunity possibly to get to vote on a Saturday how convenient is that? Or to pick the day you want to go vote. It’s really convenient," said Adams.

Fewer precincts will be open on Election Day due to the pandemic and a lack of poll workers.

“We weren’t able to open every precinct. Not all the precincts can handle social distancing and a lot of the usual precincts canceled on us," said Adams. “Help us do right by our poll workers who are really under a lot of strain trying to run this election especially with social distancing. It’s going to be more convenient for you as a voter, it’s going to be more convenient for the poll workers and also more convenient for other voters.”

Adams says he wants to limit long lines at the polls especially as COVID-19 surges across the state.

“The more that you can help us reduce the crowds by voting early the better. We’re gonna have fewer people get sick if you do" said Adams.

Adams says about 30% of voting will be done through absentee ballots while the rest will be from in-person voting.

“We’ve got about three out of four absentee ballots that have been returned already so there’s a smattering of those left to come in but the vast majority of votes that have been cast already and that will remain to be cast will be in person votes," said Adams.

12 precincts will be open in Perry County on November 3.

To find polling locations click here.

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