Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Before polls open in Philly, long lines have formed

Jennifer Lin reports:

Before polls open in Philly, long lines have formed

Jennifer Lin reports:

6:50 a.m.

Ogontz Ave. and 76th Ave

With the polls due to open at 7 a.m., more than 100 people -- all African-American -- are waiting in line outside the polling place, a fire station. These voters are in the 50th Ward, 20th and 30th Divisions.

Up and down Ogontz Avenue, the lines at the polling places were a block long.

Democratic committeeman for the 30th Division, Robert Boykin, said about 600 registered Democrats are in his division, up 50 percent from the last election. He said a lot of the new voters are young people.  

"It's going to be a long, long day. But I don't mind," Boykin said, adding, "look at the line now."

First in line was Curtis Donald, 32, a hotel chef, who arrived at the polling station at 5:30 a.m.

He said, "I wanted to be here first, get it done and out of the way. It's time for change."

Donald is voting for Obama. He likes the candidate's health care plan and he wants Obama to bring the troops home.

Donald said Obama will be a role model for his neighborhood. "He'll lift it up. A lot of young people are voting, making a change."

Some of the older voters brought chairs with them.

Nicole Turner, 28, a hospital billing specialist, said she's a regular voter. She thinks this election is "a lot more urgent. Another four years of this wouldn't be right."

"Especially since I'm bringing a child into this world," said Turner, who was visibly pregnant. "It's definitely more urgent for me. I like his ideas, what he stands for."

 Click here for Philly.com's politics page.

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Thomas FitzgeraldThomas Fitzgerald joined The Philadelphia Inquirer in 2000, and has covered Harrisburg as well as city, state and national politics for the newspaper. He was a “boy on the bus” in the 2004 presidential campaign and during primary contests in 2000 and 1996.

Nathan Gorenstein has covered politics and government in the city, state and nation for the Inquirer. He's worked in the city hall bureau, had a stint on the business desk, and once covered the suburbs. After serving as assistant regional editor, he was named editor of the "Politics" web site.

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