As polls began closing in the parts of Kentucky in the Eastern Time zone Tuesday, State Rep. Charles Booker’s U.S. Senate campaign requested an emergency injunction from the Jefferson Circuit Court to extend voting hours until 9 p.m. at the Kentucky Exposition Center.
The campaign said it filed a petition for the injunction because of reports of serious traffic delays at the Kentucky Expo Center, which served as a polling location in Louisville.
After the petition was filed, the doors were unlocked and remained open until 6:30 p.m., NBC affiliate WAVE-TV reports.
“For hours, we’ve been hearing reports that people are stuck in hour-long lines to park their car before they can vote,” Booker’s campaign manager Colin Lauderdale said in a statement. “We’re fully committed to ensuring that each one of those people can vote, which is why we’re filing an emergency petition to extend voting hours. We need to keep the only polling location in Louisville open, because every single voice deserves to be heard and everyone who wants to should be able to cast their ballot.”
In a tweet, Senate candidate Amy McGrath said her campaign was also filing an injunction to keep polls open in Jefferson County until everyone in line could vote.
Everyone in line should be able to vote. We're also filing an injunction to keep the polls open in Jefferson County. Stay in line.
— Amy McGrath (@AmyMcGrathKY) June 23, 2020
The Louisville Courier Journal reports that dozens of people were locked out of the Kentucky Expo Center after the polls closed at 6 p.m. But, the newspaper reports that those people were later allowed inside to vote.
Reporters captured images of outraged voters banging on the doors, demanding election officials let them inside before the injunction was issued. “Let us in! Let us vote!” some voters were heard chanting.
ALL THESE VOTERS HAVE BEEN LOCKED OUTSIDE THE EXPO CENTER IN LOUISVILLE WHEN THEY WERE IN LINE AT 6PM.
Booker campaign has filed an injunction demanding anybody in line or in line to park is able to vote. pic.twitter.com/GmDo5XxSsR
— Becca Rast (@BeccaRast) June 23, 2020
Many people now locked out of voting in Louisville…doors closed at 6pm sharp in Kentucky. They are telling @WCKitchen team they arrived before but traffic was backed up getting into Exposition Center & 30 mins just to get to parking lot… #ChefsForDemocracy pic.twitter.com/32dtxQ1kZQ
— José Andrés (@chefjoseandres) June 23, 2020
The people want to vote. pic.twitter.com/ATYDrQcS3L
— jacob ryan (@jacobhryan) June 23, 2020
This is completely unacceptable. If you are in line, you should be allowed to vote. https://t.co/J3NmX8rzrQ
— Niles Edward Francis (@NilesGApol) June 23, 2020
This is Mitch McConnell's Kentucky. This is no accident. They do not want the American people to vote. https://t.co/fxcnYCcw2e
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) June 23, 2020