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Voters in Virginia Beach show up early to cast their votes for off-year election

Voter turnout for this state legislative election is predicted to be low, but people in Virginia Beach are showing up to do their civic duty.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — It's an off year for an election, which means there's no president or gubernatorial races, but state legislative ones. In past off-year elections, only 30% to 35% of voters cast ballots.

However, as of 6 a.m. Tuesday morning, voting was in full swing in Virginia Beach at Windsor Woods Elementary School.

Frank Janes cast his ballot first at the school. Through the rain and the dark, nearly two dozen others joined him.

“I always vote every election, no matter what it is,” said Janes. “Opening with the rain and all, that’s pretty good so far, especially with an off-year election.”

Cetrick Thomas is a volunteer election official. So he must stay at the school all day, as voters come and go.

“I retired from the military, and I just want to keep giving back and this democratic process,” said Thomas.

He’s helped with the polling centers for five years now. “I think it’s good, I think the people are coming out and exercising their right to vote," Thomas said.

Virginia Beach voters, like Simone Newsome, are regulars for each election. "Third time in a row you’ve seen me," Newsome said.

Newsome said she believes her vote plays a big role in the balance of power in the General Assembly.

"Yes, because these are the people who represent us,” said Newsome.

Voter Jason Seward believes Virginia Beach is the place to watch, to see a shift in the Commonwealth.

Right now, Republicans have a one-seat advantage in the Senate and two in the House of Delegates.

“It’s a time of change and I like to think that every vote counts,” said Seward.

If you're in line by 7 p.m., you can cast your vote.

For a guide to your closest polling place and more information on Tuesday's voting process, click here.

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