What you need to know about the Indiana Primary Election

Politics

INDIANAPOLIS — The 2020 Indiana Primary Election is going to be different than most.

COVID-19 not only delayed the event, but it also changed election laws.

Everyone had the option to vote by mail during the primary, and now, in-person voting looks a little different too.

“I think the polls tomorrow people are going to be sitting around reading a lot of books because it’s going to be very boring,” said Steve Shaw, who is marking his 10th year as a poll worker in Hamilton County.

He suspects Tuesday’s election will be much different.

“I think that’s because most of the people who usually vote, probably voted absentee,” said Shaw.

Those who do decide to vote in person have 125 polling locations in Hamilton County. That’s the same number the county typically has available. However, some counties in Indiana chose to consolidate polling sites.

“We just feel like that was a safer route for the poll workers and the voters,” said Hamilton County Clerk Kathy Williams.

Statewide, nearly 550,000 people have requested to vote by mail in the primary. So far, about 472,000 have returned those ballots. If you haven’t returned yours, you can exchange it to vote in person on election day instead. You can also turn your mail-in ballot into your county clerk’s office before noon.

“If you don’t know where your polling place is you can go to Indiana Voters [to] find out who is on your ballot, where your polling place is. Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.,” said Williams.

The state provided masks, cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer to every county.

“There will be the six feet social distancing when you are standing in line,” explained Williams.

And that classic voting sticker is still available, you just have to grab it yourself this time.

“Sometimes they come in and say, ‘Where’s the sticker? Where’s the sticker?’” said Shaw as he pointed to the bowl of stickers at the early voting site.

People looking for quick results will need to be patient. This election could take days to determine due to the amount of mail-in ballots.

“Our goal would be to try to get them done in two days,” said Williams.

Mail-in may be more convenient for the voter, but Shaw said it’s more time consuming for workers.

“Oh, yes,” said Shaw.

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