State, local officials fielding massive voter registration

By Cody Holyoke - bio | email

Montgomery, Al. (WSFA) -- State staffers are constantly opening envelopes from all over Alabama, as residents sign up to vote.

"We've seen booms in registration before..but not quite to this level," explained Ed Packard, Voter Registration Supervisor for the Secretary of State's office.

Voters are popping out of the woodwork in record numbers.

Statewide, 80,470 new applicants sent in their registration forms in the past month.

15,174 have done so in the last 5 days.

"Not only is it the highly organized activist groups, but it's also just average people on the street," Packard said.

Many forms come in from populated areas like Montgomery, Mobile, and Birmingham, but staffers have found applications from all over the state.

"Some counties that I didn't even know existed are actually having a lot of people registering to vote," said one worker.

While those thousands of voter registration forms are headed to the State Capitol, county election officials are gearing up for what they say could be the biggest voter turnout in the state's history.

"You plan and prepare for the big one.  I think this'll be the election we size all future elections off of," explained Trey Granger, Director of Montgomery County's Elections Center.

Nearly 5,100 new voters registered in Montgomery County in the last three weeks, and that's not even counting the large number of residents looking to vote absentee.

"It's amazing to see what a wonderful public response we're getting," Granger said.

But it's not over.

Local and state workers are waiting for even more last minute forms as November nears.

"Of course, we expect obviously these numbers to go up dramatically," Packard explained.

The deadline to register to vote is October 24th.  The deadline to register for an absentee ballot is October 30th.