PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — More than 700 polling places will open around Philadelphia on Tuesday as voters head to the polls for the Pennsylvania primary. Eyewitness News spoke with election officials about what voters need to know before heading out to cast their vote.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will be at the forefront of the midterm elections with high-stakes races for U.S. Senate and for the governorship.
Philadelphia election officials are gearing up for a steady stream of voters early Tuesday morning.
“The polls will open tomorrow at 7 a,m. and they will be open until 8 p.m. tomorrow night,” said Lisa Deeley, chairperson of Philadelphia city commissioners. “If you are in line at 8 p.m., you’re still able to vote.”
Eyewitness News sat down on election eve with Deeley. She explains what voters can expect once they get to the polls.
“When you get into your polling place, you want to check in with your friendly neighbors who are the election board workers,” Deeley said. “You give them your name, they find you in the poll worker book and then they’ll direct you to a voting system where you can vote in person on the voting machine.”
If you’re a first-time voter or voting for the first time at a new polling place, you will need to show identification. In light of rising COVID-19 cases in the city, election officials are also encouraging voters to mask up and create social distancing if possible.
“If there’s a line in the polling place and there is an opportunity to wait in line outside, we’re asking you to please take advantage of that outside space,” Deeley said.
If you’re planning on voting by mail, all mail-in ballots need to be submitted by 8 p.m. on Tuesday. There are 16 drop-off boxes located throughout the city.
If you’ve changed your mind and would rather vote in person, you still can.
“If you’re a mail-in voter and you prefer to vote in-person tomorrow, you still have the option to do that,” Deeley said. “What you need to do is bring your entire ballot, the contents just as they were delivered to you, to your polling place, you’ll surrender that ballot to the election board and they will allow you to vote on the voting system.”
The city is still desperately recruiting poll workers. Reach out if you are available to man a polling place.
Also, if you find any discrepancies once you’re inside the polling place, you can report them by calling 215-686-1590.
District Attorney Larry Krasner’s office will be activating its election task force. It will be handling any complaints or concerns you may have about activities outside of polling places.