ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (CBS) — Democrats in the northwest suburbs are trying to prod more voters into casting ballots early, even though there are already many in line.
A get-out-the-vote rally hosted by U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), 8th District congressional candidate Tammy Duckworth, and 10th District candidate Brad Schneider in Arlington Heights’ Harmony Park drew about 50 people.
Schneider told them it is a duty to be heard, and that for many voters, the best way is to cast an early ballot.
“Today and every day going forward truly is election day, until Nov. 6,” he said.
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Duckworth said she has to counter the money being spent by five political action committees with votes.
“Today is voting day. Tomorrow is voting day,” she said. “It’s time to get your voices out there.”
Schakowsky faces a much easier re-election bid, but was no less emphatic.
“Early voting is important because it creates a momentum,” she said.
Schakowsky led a group of about 30 to Arlington Heights’ village hall, where she joined the line, after giving poll workers a box of doughnuts. The polling place is among the busiest early voting centers in suburban Cook County, and one that will be open daily until election day. Through Friday, it had processed 4,082 voters, and Schakowsky found nearly 100 people in front of her.
“This is nothing,” said Terri Wemlinger, of Prospect Heights. “I’ve waited in lines longer than this for things that were not this important.”
Ruth Graham, of Rolling Meadows, said she is certain whom she wants elected, but said others may not be so certain.
“It’s a statement,” she said. “It’s important to vote this year, probably more so than ever.”
She said whomever wins the White House next month will most likely name several justices to the U.S. Supreme Court and still must answer critical questions about the economy and job creation.
“People, whether they’re on one side or the other, have very strong feelings, so I think they’re feeling more motivated to vote,” she said.