Day one of early voting in North Carolina draws big crowds in New Hanover County

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There were lines of people and cars waiting to vote at the New Hanover County Government Center early voting location on Thursday. (Photo by Hannah Leyva.)
There were lines of people and cars waiting to vote at the New Hanover County Government Center early voting location on Thursday. (Photo by Hannah Leyva.)

Thursday was the first day of one-stop absentee voting — aka, early voting — in North Carolina, which is a key battleground state in this year’s presidential election, and there were lines at many local polling sites.

At the New Hanover County Government Center, the polling site next to the county’s Board of Elections office had a line out the door around 12:30 in the afternoon. More than 50 people waited in line outside at one point, with more in line inside. There was also a steady line of cars coming to do curbside voting.

According to officials, the crowds were steady since the polls opened at 9 a.m.

“It’s been busy all day,” said New Hanover County Board of Elections Director Derek Bowens, adding that there hadn’t been any hiccups despite the volume of people. “It’s been smooth so far.”

The early voting period in North Carolina ends on Nov. 5, the Saturday before the Nov. 8 election. Click here for a list of one-stop absentee voting locations and hours in New Hanover, Brunswick and Pender counties.