Heavy early voter turnout in Tulsa County

    Nearly 4,500 people cast their vote on the first day of early voting in Tulsa county. (Mummolo/KTUL)<p>{/p}

    The line to vote at Hardesty library was as big as the giant books stacked out front.

    "I thought I would be able to just find any parking spot and come right in," said Barb Whitesell.

    Instead, people waited patiently for roughly 45 minutes to cast their vote.

    "Just wanted to have a word in the politics," said Pete Lundberg.

    "I wanted someone that would support our president so that we could get the issues through that are vital to our country," said Whitesell.

    Meanwhile, downtown at the election board..

    "When we got in this morning at 7:30 folks were lined up in the dark in the rain ready to vote," said Tulsa County Election Board Secretary Gwen Freeman.

    Add to that the 6,000 absentee ballots they've already counted, and that's not including what's just arrived.

    "Yesterday’s mail we received over 1,200 absentee ballots back in the mail, today’s mail was probably around 700 absentee ballots," said Freeman.

    What's driving this surge of voter participation?

    "There’s a different feeling in the air," said Buddy Blair, and he would know, his involvement in politics dates back to 1974 when he was campaign manager for Bill Clinton's first run for office.

    "We hooked up he had heard I was interested in politics and so I managed his campaign when he ran for congress and got beat. In fact, the joke is among everybody I elected him president because if he had won congress there was no place for him to go," he laughed.

    His take on all this heavy turnout?

    "You know, usually if there’s a heavy turnout there’s a reason for it, and I really think that it involves this negative campaigning that Trumps been running," he said.

    Against trump or for, we'll find out next Tuesday, that is, if everyone finally makes it through these lines.

    "We’re probably going to start doing absentee, makes it a lot easier," laughed Lundberg.

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