2020 election

Crowds Turn Out for Saturday Absentee Voting in Jefferson County

Lines of voters stretched into Linn Park Saturday as they waited to cast their absentee ballots in person. (Photo by Vickey Williams)

Hundreds of people lined up in Linn Park on Saturday to cast their absentee ballots in person.

The Jefferson County Commission decided to open the courthouse for in-person absentee voting this Saturday and next because people have been waiting in line for up to three hours to vote during the week.

The Alabama Poor People’s Campaign was among several groups manning tables in the park with absentee ballot applications for voters to fill out before they got in the official line to vote. Volunteers also could make a photo ID in case a voter did not have one, which is required before they cast their ballots.

“At least one step will be done before getting inside the courthouse,” said the Rev. Carolyn Foster, one of the chairs of the state Poor People’s Campaign.

Foster said her group arrived to set up its table at 8 a.m., an hour before the courthouse opened its doors for absentee voters, and the line of waiting voters “was already very long,” and “we have been busy ever since.”

“We brought 200 applications for the ballot, “Foster said. “We ran out of that, and I went and made 200 more.”

As voters in line arrived at the courthouse steps, they were sent to a covered area with seating. They then were allowed inside to officially cast their ballots.

Food, beverages and music also were available in the park.

“This is so exciting to see, this is a beautiful sight to see,” Foster said.

Miranda Fulmore, WBHM, contributed this story.