PHOTOS: Howard County Votes

Scenes and stories from polling places around the county.


First update: 10:09 a.m. - Wilde Lake High School - Columbia

The line at Wilde Lake High School at about 9:30 a.m. was approximately 20 people long. Chief Election Judge Denise Wright said the polling place had been very busy since 7 a.m.

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"There were people lined  up since 5:15 a.m. and we don't even officially open the doors until 6," said Wright. She said 359 people had voted so far at Wilde Lake.

Located a sizable distance from the front entrance of the high school was bundled up Hope Collins of Wilde Lake.

Collins was handing out literature in support of Question 6 - which would legalize gay marriage in Maryland. Collins said she has a daughter who has a partner and a young son.

"You see a lot of injustice when you know someone directly," said Collins. She said people had been receptive of the literature and a few have given her thumbs up.

Update 2 - 10:22 a.m. - Frederick Road 7-Eleven - Ellicott City

Robyn Sadler, 50, of Ellicott City, stopped into the 7-Eleven on Frederick Road after voting at the Ellicott City Senior Center.

"I was in and out," she said.

Sadler came out to vote in favor of Q 6 and 7.

"Six was a no brainier," she said. "On seven, I went back and forth."

She'd heard all of the debates about where the casino revenues would or wouldn't go, "but ultimately it all goes to the general fund ... I voted yes because it will bring jobs to the area," she said. "Much needed jobs."

Update 3 - 10:54 a.m. - Atholton High School - Columbia

Board of Education candidate Jackie Scott strolled out of Atholton High School after voting. She said she was up early this morning after staying up late Monday night.

"I'm totally psyched," said Scott.

She said she voted for herself, but kept secret her other two choices for school board.

"I'm looking forward to great things tonight," said Scott. She added, "Even if I lose, I'm going to continue to work for our kids."

After a short conversation, Scott posed for the photo above with local Girl Scouts who were selling cookies outside the high school.

Update 4 - 12:27 p.m. - River Hill High School - Clarksville

Joe Knight, of Ellicott City, stood outside River Hill High asking voters to vote down Question 6, which if approved, would legalize gay marriage in Maryland.

He said it was a matter of science to him, not civil rights.

"There's absolutely no proof at all that people are born gay," said Knight. "You cannot equate homosexuality to race."

He said he wasn't against civil unions for gay couples, only against marriage.

"You could take a neutron microscope and not find a hateful bone in my body," said Knight. "It's about telling our kids [in schools] homosexuality is a variance of human sexuality, I'm not OK with that."

Also at River Hill High was Phyllis Cook, a polling place evaluator with the League of Women Voters. She was at the polling place with a checklist to evaluate ballots, make sure there's privacy in the voting booths, that there are election judges who can answer voters' questions and to make sure the machines are working.

Cook, who said she works as a real estate agent, took the day off to be an evaluator.

"I really enjoy it," said Cook, before she started peppering the chief election judges with questions.

By 11 a.m. 256 people had voted at River Hill High, according to the election judges.

Update 5 - Swansfield Elementary School - 2:14 p.m.

Mary Kay Sigaty, chairperson of the Howard County Council, and board of education candidate Ann De Lacy stood outside Swansfield Elementary School on Tuesday afternoon.

Sigaty was out supporting Jackie Scott and Ellen Flynn Giles for board of education.

"I'm supporting Ellen because I think she is extraordinarily well-qualified," said Sigaty.

She added that she's supporting Scott because she believes her experience as an attorney and law school professor will help her navigate the local, state and national issues that a board member must deal with.

"I believe [Scott's] heart is in the right place," said Sigaty.

Meanwhile, De Lacy was telling every voter she could to support her for the board because she is a former teacher.

"All I have to do is say I'm a teacher and that does it," said De Lacy. "I think it's so important that an educator wins today."

De Lacy said if she wins she'll probably take out her knitting to finally get her mind off the campaign. If she loses, she said she'll still be an advocate for local students and would probably run again in two years.

Update 6 - Bryant Woods Elementary - 5:30 p.m.

As the sun went down on Election Day, volunteers held strong outside Bryan Woods Elementary as the evening rush began.

Jay Bonstingl, a volunteer for board of education candidate David Gertler, said the voters he spoke to had a mixed level of knowledge of board candidates.

"Some people will point to my shirt and say I like his stance on science and tech," said Bonstingl, "and others really don't know about any of the candidates, which is kind of surprising."

Inside the polling place at Bryant Woods, chief election judge William Fleck said 752 people had voted as of 4 p.m. He said the max wait so far on Tuesday was 30 minutes and around 5 p.m. it was 15 minutes.

Update 7 - Howard High School - Ellicott City

Outside of Howard High was Nick Secret, 25, of Ellicott City holding a sign saying "Who wins: The Global Banking Elite." He said he planned to go to D.C. to join an anti-austerity rally, but that no one showed up, so he walked to Howard High to talk to voters about the one percent.

Inside the three precincts at Howard High there were no lines around 6:30 p.m., with a small amount of voters trickling in, signing in and voting.

Chief Judge John Cougnet said their busiest time was between 7 a.m. until about 8:30 a.m. He said during that time the precinct provided sample ballots to voters waiting in line, which he said sped up the voting process.

As of about 6 p.m. Cougnet said over 900 people had voted in the precinct he was working.

MG42 November 06, 2012 at 05:46 PM
I encourage everyone to do their civic duty today by purchasing a firearm.
Emily November 06, 2012 at 08:59 PM
Just left voting at Hammond Elementary. I had three people in line in front of me. When I left, it looked like there were maybe 10-15 people waiting. Nothing compared to people waiting hours!
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