Madison family helped to keep voters in line on Election Day


RIDGELAND, Miss. (WJTV) — We’ve seen record breaking election numbers over the last few weeks.

​”About a quarter of a million Mississippians requested absentee ballots,” Secretary of State Michael Watson said. “You compare that number with 2016, it was 110,000 so it more than doubled that.”

This is a good thing, but it came at a price for some folks who had to block a big chunk out of their day to vote. Some had to wait up to three hours.

This made it easy for voters to get discouraged and lose their patience while waiting.

Enter the Abel family from Madison. As part of Poor People’s Campaign, Mary Helen Abel and her kids visited different polling locations across the metro.  They handed out goodies to people in line like snacks and water.

Their goal was to boost morale and keep people motivated to stay in line, no matter how long the wait.

It was a new experience for them. They didn’t know what to expect, but they said it went well.

“This is the first time,” John Hudson Abel said. “I was happy to do it!”

Mary Helen said this was not about getting any one group of people to show up, it’s much bigger than that.

“We wanna make sure that everybody has what they need and are equipped to be able to be part of our democracy,” Mary Helen said.

One of the locations that the Abels visited was “The Mark Apartments” in Ridgeland, the children said that they were so happy to be able to help their mom.

“We want them to stay in line,” CW said. “We don’t want them to leave!”

Mary Helen said that the children’s enthusiasm helped everybody — including themselves — get through the day.

“We like to help people!” John Hudson said. “Yeah Yeah!”

“Our family super power is love!” said Hugh Parker.

A local family doing what they can to make a difference, during a historic election.


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