HUNTERSVILLE, NC (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – It was not a line out the door but at the Huntersville early voting site–the North County Library–there has been a noticeable uptick in people coming in.
On Monday, just 57 people came in to vote at the location, according to statistics from the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections.
The news of the Supreme Court’s draft decision on abortion came out Monday night.
On Tuesday, the number of people early voting more than doubled to 128.
As of Wednesday, Queen City News noticed a small, but steady amount of people coming to vote. A crew asked why many were coming now.
“I just like early voting,” said Susan Beaver.
But for others, the reasons were more complex, and have everything to do with the last few days.
“I was watching the news last night,” said one woman. “It’s just startling, with Roe vs. Wade. 50 years, women have had this right.”
The statistics from early voting sites across Mecklenburg County show some areas are seeing significant upticks in people voting. While the Mecklenburg County said, overall, there has not been a spike in early voting, notable increases were seen at their Independence, Mint Hill, South Charlotte, Southpark, and Spirit Square, and West Blvd. sites, and Tuesday saw the highest amount of voting since the start of early voting.
Groups for and against abortion said that the issue is bound to energize and mobilize voters on either side.
“We’ll see increased participation, and it’ll turn out people who have been apathetic,” said Kendra Johnson with Equality NC.
The group has been watching the reaction to the draft decision since it came out and noted that there has been an uptick in online engagement since the draft decision news came down.
Additionally, there has been wide reporting and speculation that, if a decision is made final, it could affect the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, due to the privacy concerns that were at the center of Roe vs. Wade.
“They are intrinsically connected,” said Johnson. “The right to be who you are, to love who you love, and to enjoy all the goods and services like everyone else is connected to bodily autonomy.”
Legal experts said the draft opinion, in its current form, would allow for a potential reconsideration or reversal on a number of cases relating to marriage, consensual sex, and birth control.
The Supreme Court’s draft ruling, which was leaked and later authenticated by the court, said it only affects abortion, though some legal scholars believe that could be tested by other cases.
The Mecklenburg County Republican Party noted a similar uptick in online engagement. Queen City News also reached out to a statewide conservative organization for information on their engagement, but they could not immediately provide details.
Some people that Queen City News spoke with Wednesday recognized the impact of the Supreme Court news but said it didn’t have a bearing on their voting.
“I was definitely going to come no matter what,” said one man.
The woman who came to vote after hearing about the Supreme Court draft decision on the news, however, said it was the primary reason for her to cast her ballot.
“It’s not just about abortion,” she said. “I decide what I want to do with my body. No one else has that power, or should have that power.”