Voter Turnout Appears To Be High In Ohio

Melissa Block talks with Tamara Keith in Ohio.

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MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And we're going to move on now to Ohio. Polls don't close there until 7:30, about 20 minutes from now. That's where we find NPR's Tamara Keith, who's at a polling place on the campus of the Ohio State University in Columbus. And Tamara, what can you tell us about the voting issues in Ohio. It's a closely contested state, of course, and a real electoral prize, 18 votes, 18 electoral votes.

TAMARA KEITH, BYLINE: Absolutely. Well, people are definitely voting. Turnout here at this polling location is incredibly high. I've been told by poll workers at other locations that turnout is also quite strong. Of course, we won't really know until the night is over. So people are lined up. Here on campus, they're waiting anywhere from about 30 minutes to about 90 minutes. Other polling places, the lines have been shorter.

BLOCK: And the people who are on line, Tamara, they've been told if they're on line before the polls close, they do get to cast a vote.

KEITH: That is correct. As long - the last person in line at 7:30, either a poll worker or a sheriff's deputy will stand behind them and say this is the end of the line right when the clock strikes 7:30. So people here are encouraging the students to get in line and telling their vote will count as long as it takes.

BLOCK: Also, a key Senate race in Ohio, the incumbent Democrat Sherrod Brown facing Josh Mandel.

KEITH: Indeed. It is a tight race and tons of money, just like Brian said in Virginia. I mean, this is a race where the candidates have spent a lot of money, but the outside groups have just inundated the state with ads on television. It's been tough to be an Ohioan if you like watching television.

BLOCK: Okay. Tam, thanks so much. We'll be checking with you through the night. NPR's Tamara Keith in Columbus, Ohio.

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