AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Early voting in Georgia started this week, and many community members have already hit the polls to avoid going at the last minute.

“On election day the lines are longer, and it takes a longer time to get in there,” said Michael Hollis, an early voter at the Richmond County Municipal Building.

Representatives from both the Richmond County Democratic and Republican parties said they need people to utilize this method.

“With so much on the line this election, voting early is the best choice for casting your ballot,” said Jordan Johnson, a District 1 commissioner. “Because life happens, work, family health. Lots of things can come up on Election Day.”

He said reproductive rights, housing, education and wages are at stake.

“Folks need access to healthcare. Folks need access to good quality education, good quality housing, all of those issues are on the ballot,” Johnsons said. “Those are the issues that Georgia Democrats care about.”

Dem. Representative Brian Prince share his personal ties to the reproductive rights issue.

“I’m a father of three daughters, I have a wife and a mother – I have a lot of female in my life,” he said. “For the government to tell a female or a person what they can and can’t do with their own bodies, all that’s on the line.”

Sherry Barnes, the chairman for the Richmond County Republican Party said the economy and inflation are some of the most important issues.

“Gas is the lowest in the nation here in Georgia, and that’s due to our republican leadership,” she said. “Brian Kemp, and all of our constitutional officers. We need to be out voting to make sure we keep these offices, make sure we keep the economy the way it is.”

Election day, November 8th, is the last day to vote, and anything could happen to prevent someone from exercising their right to vote if they wait until then.

 “It is very much too important for you to miss the opportunity,” said Barbra Hilliard, an early voter at the Richmond County Municipal Building. “So please, if you get a chance to vote in advance, please come on down.”

The Richmond County Democratic Party is hosting a “get out and vote” rally on October 20th from 5-7 p.m. at IBEW Local 1579, 1250 Reynolds St. Augusta, GA 30901.

Click this link to view a list of voting locations in the area.