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Election Results: Epps Edges Murray for School Board; Dems Sweep Area House Seats

A roundup of Tuesday's balloting in Laurel.

Editor's note: Below is an archive of our coverage from Tuesday's general election in Laurel. Keep it at Patch for more post-election analysis in the coming days, or follow our Facebook page and Twitter handle (@LaurelPatch).

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• 2:56 a.m. Epps edges Murray for school board

With 100 percent of precincts now reporting, Zabrina Epps has narrowly defeated David Murray, 16,066 votes (50.28 percent) to 15,813 (49.48 percent), for the District 1 seat on the Prince George's County Board of Education.

Meanwhile, Prince George's voters overwhelmingly approved Judge Stuart R. Berger to retain his seat on the Court of Special Appeals and Judge Michele D. Hotten to retain her seat on the Court of Special Appeals, Circuit 4.

And a five-person slate of Krystal Alves, DaNeeka Varner Cotton, John P. Davey, Hassan A. El-Amin, and Sherrie L. Krauser were handily voted onto the 7th Circuit Court.

All seven county-level referenda were also approved by Prince George's voters, each by a wide margin. On statewide ballot initiatives, the county sided with Maryland's electorate to easily approve questions 1-5 and narrowly uphold question 6 (gay marriage) and question 7 (gambling expansion).

Patch will have more detailed election breakdowns from Laurel and Prince George's County on Wednesday.

• 9:49 p.m.: Local results

Taking a look at some local races, Zabrina Epps and David Murray are almost perfectly tied in the latest vote tally for the Prince George's County District 1 Board of Education seat.

According to the most recent figures from the Maryland Board of Elections, Murray has 6,480 votes (49.89 percent) to Epps' 6,477 (49.87 percent), with an undisclosed percentage of precincts reporting. 32 write-in votes were also recorded.

In area House races, Democratic representatives Dutch Ruppersberger (Dist. 2), John Sarbanes (Dist. 3), Donna Edwards (Dist.4), and Steny Hoyer (Dist. 5) are all projected to cruise to victory over their Republican opponents (respectively, Nancy Jacobs, Eric Knowles, Faith Loudon, and Tony O'Donnell).

• 8:30 p.m.: No surprises here

President Barack Obama is projected to handily win Maryland's 10 electoral votes.

• 8:15 p.m.: Polls closed

The polls have officially closed in Maryland. Voters who were in line by 8 p.m. will still be allowed to cast ballots.

We'll have more on tonight's election results as vote tallies become available.

• 6:23 p.m.: Final stretch

With voting in Maryland coming down to the final two hours, a steady stream of voters continued to pour into Laurel polls.

At Deerfield Run Elementary School (10-08) in South Laurel, some 811 ballots had been cast by 3 p.m. Chief Judge Geraldine Delancey said the wait had been as high as 90 minutes this morning, but that the pace of votes had leveled off a bit in the afternoon.

Outside of Deerfield, girl scouts from troops 383 and 2658 sold baked goods to raise funds for their trip to Savannah, GA.

The news was similar at South Laurel's Montpelier Elementary School, where Chief Judge Lou Caudill said about 1,000 votes had been cast by 3 p.m.

Voting went smoothly, Caudill said, and the touchscreen machines at the station held up well throughout the day.

Meanwhile, 645 votes had been cast in the gym of The Tabernacle of Laurel (precinct 10-10) as of 3 p.m. The church is also the site of balloting for precinct 10-11.

As dark began to set in Tuesday, lines of voters coming off of work and canvassers making their final pitch could be seen filling the church's parking lot.

• 4:22 p.m.: More reports of heavy turnout

Wait times seemed to have ebbed a bit in Laurel this afternoon, but area poll workers said that this morning's long lines had translated to big turnout—with more still to come.

At Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle School (precinct 10-01) in South Laurel, Chief Judge Donatus Onuegbu said that some 890 people had voted by 3 p.m.

Earlier in the day, lines ran up and down the main corridor of the school and out the front door, he said. Fortunately, only one of the station's machines went down on the day.

When asked if turnout had been high Tuesday at Oaklands Elementary School (precinct 10-09), Chief Judge Rene Marshall put it simply: "Oh. My. God."

About 1,000 people had voted at her station by 3 p.m., she said. The touchscreen machines there have held up well over the course of the day, though Marshall said there had been some minor difficulties with the key cards voters must insert due to dirt and oil collecting on the metallic part.

And at South Laurel's James H. Harrison Elementary School (precinct 10-06), an election official said that wait times reached 2 1/2 hours this morning. Just over 1,200 people had voted there by 3 p.m. this afternoon.

At 5:20 a.m.—nearly two hours before the polls opened—three people were already waiting outside, he added. The line grew from there, eventually running several hundred feet to Larchdale Road.

• 3:12 p.m.: Smooth sailing in West Laurel, long lines at LVFD

Over at Bond Mill Elementary School in West Laurel (precinct 10-05), Chief Judge Jeff Lee said that over 40 percent of registered voters had cast ballots by early afternoon—"more than normal" by his estimation. He added that voting had gone smoothly so far.

At the Laurel Volunteer Fire Department on Cherry Lane, Chief Judge Tara Esquivel said that the line had gone out the door and stretched down the block at one point. Police were called in to direct traffic and stave off gridlock in the parking lot, she said.

Still, Esquivel said that wait times had been comparatively low, topping out around 60-75 minutes. By mid-afternoon, the line had dwindled to several dozen people.

Over 1200 people had cast ballots by about 2 p.m., according to Esquivel. 

• 2:20 p.m.: '20 lines, body to body'

At the Robert J. DiPietro Community Center (precinct 10-12), Chief Judge Deni Antoinette Mazingo said that the wait time to cast a ballot climbed as high as four or five hours Tuesday morning.

When poll workers arrived at 5:45 a.m., Mazingo said, the queue had already wrapped around the building. At the peak of voting, it snaked through a neighboring gym "20 lines, body to body." 

By mid-afternoon, the wait had dipped to around two hours.

She added that turnout appeared higher than four years ago, possibly due to early voting disruptions brought about by Hurricane Sandy.

Three voting machines also broke at the station, according to Mazingo.

• 12:15 p.m.: No heat at Boys & Girls Club

The gym at the Laurel Boys & Girls Club (precinct 10-02) is without heat thanks to a broken furnace, forcing voters and poll workers to stay bundled up inside. (Temperatures aren't expected to crack 50° today in Laurel, according to the National Weather Service.)

Still, residents are turning out in droves. A little after noon, the line to vote stretched out the door and down the parking lot of the facility.

"When we came here around 5:30 a.m., there were already 10 people lined up," said Chief Judge Sandor Drosick. Maryland's polls opened this morning at 7 a.m.

Drosick and fellow Chief Judge Gabby Azaiza said that the heavy turnout had been "without break." As of 11 a.m., 702 people had already voted.

Nearby Laurel Elementary School (precinct 10-03) was warmer, but no less crowded. Around midday, well over 50 voters had queued up in the school's gym, weaving through folded cafeteria tables arranged as privacy shields to cast their ballots.

• 10:55 a.m.: Long but determined lines at Laurel High School

At the Laurel High School polling station (precinct 10-04), Chief Judge Debbie Allen said that turnout has been heavy all morning—with wait times of an hour or more—but that voters have been patient and determined.

"I can't get them to sit down," Allen said, moving up and down the snaking queue to keep people in straight lines.

"Can I help anyone?" she asked the crowd.

"I'd like an iced coffee, please," one voter joked.

Long waits aside, there were no major hitches Tuesday morning, according to Allen.

"Things went great," Laurel resident Bridgett Baumgartner said just after casting her ballot. She added that the wait had been "much longer" earlier in the day.

• Original article:

It's Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012—Election Day.

Across the country, tens of millions of citizens will head to the polls today to cast their ballots for President, Vice President, the U.S. House, the U.S. Senate, and thousands of other state and local positions.

In addition to federal offices, voters in the City of Laurel, North Laurel, and Maryland City will have the chance to weigh in on numerous judicial races, board of education seats, and county and statewide referenda.

(To find out exactly what's on your ballot, scroll down to the "Presidential General Ballot Proof" section of this Maryland Board of Elections page and select your county.)

If you haven't taken advantage of early or absentee voting, the polls in Maryland will be open today from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. For information on your polling place, find a rundown of Laurel-area locations below or use the poll finder on the Board of Elections' website.

We at Patch will be circulating around town to see how things are going today—from turnout figures to last-minute campaigning to any technical glitches or Election Day surprises. Check back here for updates from the field, or keep tabs on us through our Facebook page and Twitter handle (@LaurelPatch).

Just as importantly, let us know about your own experiences by posting in the comments section, or use the green "Upload Photos and Videos" button in gallery above to share sights and sounds (login required).

And if you have any questions or concerns, shoot an email to the editor, John Davisson, at johnd@patch.com.

 

LAUREL-AREA POLLING PLACES

City of Laurel/South Laurel/Prince George's County

Precinct Polling place Congressional dist. School board dist.

10-01

DWIGHT EISENHOWER MIDDLE SCHOOL
13725 BRIARWOOD DRIVE
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-02

LAUREL BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB
701 MONTGOMERY STREET
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-03

LAUREL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
516 MONTGOMERY STREET
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-04

LAUREL HIGH SCHOOL
8000 CHERRY LANE
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-05

BOND MILL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
16001 SHERWOOD AVENUE
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-06

JAMES H. HARRISON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
13200 LARCHDALE ROAD
LAUREL C-05 SB-01

10-07

MONTPELIER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL / M.P. ROOM
9200 MUIRKIRK ROAD
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-08

DEERFIELD RUN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
13000 LAUREL-BOWIE ROAD
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-09

OAKLANDS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
13710 LAUREL-BOWIE ROAD
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-10

THE TABERNACLE OF LAUREL MD – GYM
11601 SOUTH LAUREL DRIVE
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-11

THE TABERNACLE OF LAUREL MD – UNPLUG RM
11601 SOUTH LAUREL DR. 
LAUREL C-05 SB-01

10-12

ROBERT J. DIPIETRO COMM CTR
7901 CYPRESS STREET
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

10-13

LAUREL VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT
7411 CHERRY LANE
LAUREL C-04 SB-01

 

North Laurel/Howard County

Precinct Polling place Congressional dist. 02 HOPE BAPTIST CHURCH - MEETING ROOM 
8801 STEPHENS RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-02 03 HAMMOND MIDDLE SCHOOL - MEDIA ROOM 
8100 ALADDIN DR 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-03 15 LAUREL WOODS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - GYM 
9250 NORTH LAUREL RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-03 24 MURRAY HILL MIDDLE SCHOOL - CAFETERIA 
9989 WINTER SUN RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-03 25 HAMMOND ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - MEDIA CENTER 
8110 ALADDIN DR 
LAUREL, MD 20723 C-03 27 FOREST RIDGE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - GYM 
9550 GORMAN RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-02 32 GORMAN CROSSING ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - GYM 
9999 WINTER SUN RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-03 34 LAUREL WOODS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL - CAFETERIA 
9250 NORTH LAUREL RD 
LAUREL, MD 20723  C-03

 

Maryland City/Anne Arundel County

Precinct Polling place Congressional dist. 04-001 MARYLAND CITY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
3359 CRUMPTON SOUTH
LAUREL, MD 20724 C-03 04-006 RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD CATHOLIC CHURCH
8402 BROCK BRIDGE ROAD
LAUREL, MD 20724 C-03 04-009 MARYLAND CITY-RUSETT LIBRARY
3501 RUSSETT COMMON
LAUREL, MD  20724 C-02 04-017 BROCK BRIDGE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
405 BROCK BRIDGE ROAD
LAUREL, MD  20724 C-03


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