Early voting offered through October

Debi+Hilligoss+and+Danielle+Stone%2C+Coles+County+election+judges%2C+discuss+politics+with+Jim+Stone%2C+a+BSW+from+the+Martin+Luther+King+Jr.+University+Union%2C+Tuesday+in+the+Bridge+Lounge+of+the+Union+at+the+voters+table.

Kevin Hall

Debi Hilligoss and Danielle Stone, Coles County election judges, discuss politics with Jim Stone, a BSW from the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union, Tuesday in the Bridge Lounge of the Union at the voter’s table.

Stephanie Markham, News Editor

Those intending to vote in the Nov. 4 midterm elections have the option to do so earlier than that date.

Early voting booths are available from noon to 4 p.m. every weekday until Oct. 31 in the Bridge Lounge of the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

The scheduled close of registrations was Oct. 8; however, grace period registrations are still an option.

Those who have not registered yet can now do so at the Coles County Courthouse up until the day before the election, or they can register in the Union on the day of the election.

Joshua Wolff, an election volunteer, said anyone can come vote early in the Union as long as they are registered within Coles County.

“It makes things easier, especially for people who have to work on election day,” he said.

Danielle Stone, another volunteer, said 21 people had voted early so far with the polls having been open for a day and a half.

She said by the second day during the last election she worked, only five people had voted early, so the turnout this year is looking better.

The ballot includes an amendment to extend crime victims’ rights, as well as one to prohibit laws that disproportionately affect voters’ rights based on minority status.

The ballot also includes statewide advisory questions such as whether minimum wage should be raised to $10 per hour, whether health insurance plans should be required to cover birth control, and whether schools should receive additional revenue from a tax on people with an income greater than $1 million.

Additionally, voters will be able to elect their U.S. Senator, U.S. Representative, governor, attorney general, secretary of state, comptroller and treasurer, as well as various county representatives.

Stephanie Markham can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]