Calcasieu Parish Registrar Office sees large number of mail-in ballots this election season

One day left to early vote

LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - In past elections, lines could be very long. But this year, the election season has looked a little different due to the pandemic.

Calcasieu Registrar of Voters Kim Fontenot said since early voting began, she hasn’t seen a single line.

“People come in [and they say] wow I came at a good time, no lines,” Fontenot said. “[But] it’s been like this for the two weeks.”

No lines are not because people aren’t voting, but because more people are voting by mail, Fontenot said.

“In-person has slowed down,” Fontenot said. “We’ve already mailed out over 6,000 [mail-in ballot requests] and we’ve already received 3,000 [back].” That’s triple what we normally do. So yeah, it’s a big, big difference.”

Fontenot said that’s triple the amount the Calcasieu Registrar’s Office typically sees during an election season. Voters have until July 7 to request a mail-in ballot. As for the people who are voting in-person, they’re experience is different as well.

“People that are coming in to vote, they’re wearing their mask,” she said. “We disinfect everything [and we’re doing everything that the CDC has asked us to do.”

Early voting ends on July 4, 2020. The polls are open 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Election day is July 11.

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