Oklahoma election official says redistricting could reduce long voting lines

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Some voters waited in line for over three hours at their precincts on Tuesday. Officials with the Oklahoma County Election Board say redistricting following the 2020 census could help shorten wait times next election.

“We’ve heard 2-2 1/2 hours from somebody before us,” one voter told KFOR on election night.

From Edmond to Oklahoma City to the small town of Noble, Oklahoma voters were greeted by long lines at the polls on Tuesday.

“I came here at 7:30 the first time. But it was all the way past the addition, so we left. Came back about 10:30. Still long, then after lunch I said, ‘I gotta do it sometime,'” another voter said.

Our 4Sight drone captured the lines of voters wrapping around local precincts, such as Church of the Servant in Northwest Oklahoma City and Sante Fe Presbyterian in Edmond.

Doug Sanderson, Secretary of the Oklahoma County Election Board, told KFOR on Wednesday it’s one of the greatest voter turnouts they’ve ever seen, creating the hours-long wait for some voters.

“I know people think, ‘Well, just, why don’t you just add more people?’ Well, who? I mean at some point, your resources on a presidential election, they’re just maxed out,” Sanderson said.

KFOR asked if there was another way to shorten the wait time for voters, and, for now, he said the simplest solution is to vote absentee.

“We do have some polling locations, particularly in Edmond and north Oklahoma City, that are really larger than they should be,” Sanderson said.

Due to the 2020 census, lawmakers will be discussing redistricting next legislative session and Sanderson said that could provide some relief at the polls for voters who want to cast their ballots in person.

“The redrawing of the lines and everything will allow us to reevaluate how many people we send to different polling locations, and maybe that will help reduce the number,” Sanderson said.

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