Election officials reported that voter turnout was heavy up and down the shoreline this morning — from Branford to Old Saybrook — as well as in other parts of Connecticut.

In Branford, election official Valerie Erickson, who said she has been working elections “for decades,” said turnout was as high as she has ever seen it at her polling location, the Mary Tisko School.

She said, “People were lined up to vote 10-15 minutes before the polls opened at 6 this morning.” At 10:30 a.m. there was still a 10-15 minute wait to vote at the Tisko School.

Erickson described the voters who turned out, as “men and women; young and old.”

One of those waiting to vote at the Tisko School said she was a “strong Stefanowski supporter.”

The woman, who declined to identify herself, said her reasoning was that “we need a change. I am extremely impressed by him and his message.”

Turnout appeared similarly brisk at three West Hartford polling locations — the Town Hall, Bristow Middle School, and the Elmwood Community Center. We spoke to 15 women leaving the polls between 10 and 11 a.m. and all but one said they had voted for Democrats across the ballot, or mostly Democrat. In some cases the women said they wanted to send a message to Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress that they don’t like the direction they have taken the country. A few said they split their ticket on behalf of an issue specific to a particular constitutional office.

Within that small sample of 15 in traditionally Democratic West Hartford, only one woman, 88-year-old Irene Petkaitis, said she voted Republican across the ballot. “I’m afraid for this country and I think the Republicans are the ones who will save it, with all their policies,” she said.

Andrea Glidie, 75, said she voted for Ned Lamont and Democrats most of the way across her ballot. “I don’t think Republicans in Congress right now — and in the Senate — I don’t think they have any backbones and aren’t standing up for the people.

Listen to audio from eight of our interviews below:

Lamont Meets Voters in Branford

Douglas Healey for CTNewsJunkie

Himes Casts His Ballot

Douglas Healey for CTNewsJunkie

—Douglas Healey

Gilchrest and Fay in 18th House District

Jillian Gilchrest – Election Day 2018

Jillian Gilchrest talks about why she ran for the 18th House District Tuesday morning #ctpolitics #ctnewsjunkie #election2018 #LION

Posted by CTNewsJunkie.com on Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Mary Fay – Election Day 2018

Mary Fay on why she ran for the 18th House District Tuesday morning #ctpolitics #ctnewsjunkie #election2018 #LION

Posted by CTNewsJunkie.com on Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Stefanowski Greets Voters in Greenwich; Gets Caught in Downpour in Madison

Douglas Healey for CTNewsJunkie
Jack Kramer for CTNewsJunkie

After greeting voters in Greenwich earlier, Bob Stefanowski, surrounded by his family and well-wishers, cast his ballot early Tuesday afternoon in his hometown at the Madison Senior Center.

Following his vote, Stefanowski held a short news conference outside.

Stefanowski said he not only “felt good about my chances,” based on what he’s heard and seen in the last few weeks of the campaign but he said he’s also optimistic that the state Senate and House may swing Republican.

Currently the Senate is split evenly, 18-18 while the Democrats hold the majority in the House.

—Jack Kramer

Malloy: No Regrets

Gov. Malloy and Kathy Malloy vote for last time in Hartford.

Posted by CTNewsJunkie.com on Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and his wife, Kathy, voted for the last time at their polling location in Hartford on Tuesday morning.

Malloy, who isn’t seeking a third term, said he has no regrets about his tenure.

He said he’s leaving $2 billion in the Rainy Day Fund and paid off $930 million in economic recovery notes that his predecessor borrowed to balance the budget “because she wouldn’t do the hard things that I had to do.”

The governor’s race has almost become a proxy war with Republican gubernatorial nominee Bob Stefanowski trying to say Democratic nominee Ned Lamont would be a third term of Malloy. Lamont has tried his best to tie Stefanowski and his positions to Republican President Donald Trump.

—Christine Stuart

Murphy Greets Voters Shortly As Polls Open in New Haven

Jake Dressler / New Haven Independent

The New Haven Independent caught up with U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy in New Haven Tuesday morning. Murphy is running for a second term against Republican Matt Corey.

Griebel Votes In Hartford Before Heading to Putnam

doug hardy / ctnewsjunkie

Shortly after 6 a.m. and moments after voting at the House of Restoration Church in Hartford, Oz Griebel said his candidacy has been about offering an alternative from the two-party system.

Oz Griebel talks to reporters moments after casting his vote at the House of Restoration Church in Hartford

Posted by CTNewsJunkie.com on Tuesday, November 6, 2018

—Doug Hardy