Shelby County shatters early voting record on opening day


SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. — The polls are closed for the night, and votes are still being tallied. Nevertheless, officials said Shelby County broke the record on the first day of early voting.

The numbers speak for themselves, as the previous first day record was around 16,000 votes. But that number was surpassed on Tuesday afternoon.

“We are at more than 25,000, almost 26,000,” Linda Phillips, the Shelby County Election Administrator, said. “We could possibly beat the entire 2000 to present highest day ever.”

Despite the historic number of day one voters, officials were ready. They said presidential elections always draw the largest crowds, and day one creates the biggest turnout.

“We’ve been planning for this for months. So, we’re happy that everything came off pretty well today,” Phillips said.

The early voting period will continue for 15 more days and while the election commission is expecting smaller voting totals moving forward, they’ll be ready for anything.

“We have statistics based back on what percentage of the total early vote voted on what day, but this is completely and totally outside of my experience,” Phillips said. “This is 2020. There is nothing typical about 2020.”

There are 26 polling locations across Shelby County, and most are open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. during the early voting period. Here’s a list of locations and times you can vote.

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