With early voting underway in the state's presidential primary, we're getting a better sense of how the pandemic is impacting polling locations.
According to the Registrar of Voters Office, in Lafayette Parish, as of Wednesday 2,690 people have voted by mail. The number of people who have chosen to vote in person is 1,206.
Laura C. Wilson is one of those voters. She, along with others, had to show up in masks to cast their ballot. They also had to follow other safety measures.
"I voted. I'm happy," Wilson said. Going in person was more convenient for her.
"Had social distancing up there," Wilson added. "I didn't have to get near anybody. I got my own booth. It was perfect, I didn't have to stand in the line."
However, some voters are hoping to avoid the booth. The Registrar's Office is already seeing more requests for mail-in ballots.
"This COVID-19 virus has switched gears on us," Lafayette Parish Registrar of Voters Charlene Meaux-Menard said. "Normally we deal with 1,700 to 2,000 in an election. We're already 7,025 for today. We increased like 5,000 more applicants to vote by mail."
However, some have concerns about fraud. Menard says they check signatures to make sure they match and make sure voters who are now deceased are removed from the registry.
"We check with every funeral home," Menard said. "We check to see if all those people are registered to vote. The state has a statewide list so all parishes get that list and every parish gets their parish death list. We work that every month."
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