Metro Detroit voters wait hours to vote early on Friday

Posted at 11:15 PM, Oct 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-30 23:15:39-04

(WXYZ) — The drop boxes are filling up, the lines are getting long and election day is still 4 days away.

"This was surprising to wait 2 hours,” said Rochester Hills voter Sherry Harris. "I've never waited this long for an election."

Some voters in Rochester Hills waited more than 2 hours to get a ballot, braving the cold to cast their vote.

“I expected only maybe an hour or so, but we were there for a few hours in line,” said another Rochester Hills voter Karen Cooper.

“I’ve been waiting for about an hour, if not more,” said Sterling Heights voter Linda Malloy.

In Sterling Heights, voters were wrapped around the building all day, waiting as long as needed.

“I guess as long as it takes," said Sterling Heights voter Jason Hargera. "Couple of hours, hopefully not longer than that.”

By 6:00 p.m. the wait was still over an hour, with voters bringing their own blankets to tough it out.

“It was technically closed at 5:00 p.m. today, but you see the line, it’s still very busy,” said Sterling Heights City Councilman Michael Radtke.

The lines were so long, the city brought in benches and even portable heaters to keep people warm.

“We actually had to call around and we found them in Royal Oak and had to send staff out there to get them,” Radtke said of the benches and heaters.

Sterling Heights already has nearly 8,000 new registrations this election, and Rochester Hills has almost as many votes cast by Friday as they did by the end of the 2016 election.

Meanwhile, the ballot boxes keep filling up, the lines keep growing and election day keeps getting closer.

"It's worth it," Malloy said.