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After warnings he could go off the rails, the election actually went smoothly

Even that, Ms Woodall-Vogg said, was a pretty normal experience.

“In the previous elections, the police followed me in my car,” she said. “This time it was a question of how I was going to do it effectively with a media barrage. It was not out of the ordinary.

In Michigan, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has recruited more than 30,000 election workers to run polling stations and, in Detroit, work around the clock counting the state’s three million mail-in votes.

In Detroit, that meant putting together three teams of 700 to 800 people each who would begin counting the ballots when polling stations opened on election day and would work continuously until the job was finished on Wednesday. midday. In the August primary, with half the number of votes missing, it took Michigan officials two full days after the election to complete the tally, Benson said.

Crystal Reed, 52, from Warren, Mich., Was among the new polling officers.

Ms Reed, who works for the Michigan League of Conservation Voters, arrived at an elementary school at 5:20 a.m. to begin preparing for the poll at 7 a.m. She then spent the whole day working on the tabulator, helping people insert their ballots into a counting machine before making sure they left with the ubiquitous “I Voted” sticker.

She stayed until 9 p.m., leaving optimistic about democracy and its place in it.

“I love making people happy and seeing the smiles on those people’s faces, it was really cool,” Ms. Reed said. “I think when you smile and have that positive energy, it can bounce off them and make them happy too.”

Luke Broadwater, Nick Corasaniti and Jesse McKinley contributed reporting.