Early voting

drewsmagaNovember 3, 2012

I stood in line for 3 hours and 40 minutes to vote this evening! Thank goodness it was a beautiful evening in Central FL and my DH brought me a bottle of water!

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OklaMoni

I got near the building without standing in line in my car for MILES! I rode my bike over. Only about 20 minutes wait outside.

When I got back out, there was a second bike locked to the post. :)

But lots of people walked in. Parking was awful. I was so glad, I rode there.

Moni (I voted on Friday)

    Bookmark   November 3, 2012 at 11:40PM
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lily316

They JUST have to make it easier for people to vote. No wonder half the country doesn't.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 1:19AM
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minnie_tx

Happy you all voted. A vote NOT CAST is always a vote for the other guy !!

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 4:40PM
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terilyn

We have to drive so much farther to vote early, I waited for Tuesday. Funny, DH, automatically got a mail ballot for the primary because he is a senior. Didn't get one for the general election.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 12:04AM
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fran1523

I voted FRiday morning in my town hall. Didn't have to wait at all. Glad I did because there were a ton of ballot questions to consider in addition to candidates. This is a solid blue state however and the income is predictable.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 8:21AM
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susanjf_gw

i'm hoping that for a change we're not the only people voting...the last vote we were there at 4pm and voters 157 and 158! shameful!

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 9:01AM
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jae_tn

I voted in my little town. Went right in to verify, straight to booth with not a minute of waiting anywhere. My advantage to voting early is that I could go to the courthouse in the middle of town to vote early as opposed to having to go to a rural fire station for voting tomorrow. There was no wait when I voted there in August but I couldn't get my wheelchair in the doorway so had to go beside a firetruck into a side door. I didn't want to inconvenience anyone and the courthouse was more convenient for me.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 9:23AM
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bigfoot_liz

Unfortunately I think there are going to be problems w lack of early voting spilling into Tue voting here in FL. I early voted the previous Sun 10/28 and waited 1 hr only but the line was twice as long when I walked out at 6pm... FL had its' early voting shortened in half from 2008 and there are a fraction of early voting sites this time too :-0 I live in Seminole Co, burb of Orlando and we have already had double the # of early voters this year over 2008. I have a friend in South Beach who has been posting FB pics of constant lines there, hours long, some evenings people were turned away. In Winter Park they had to have a lawsuit heard Sat night to extend voting into Sunday because 2 fake bombs, shut the polls down Sat. An official, who let it be known he could have opposed the extension, actually said to reporters he didn't see why people couldn't just vote on Tue and miss a day of work LOL...talk about suppression & oppression! there are several million people living in a small 3 county area around Orlando... ~ liz

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 9:47AM
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susie53_gw

We only live about a mile from our high school where we will vote. If the line is long I'll go home and back again. Wouldn't think of not voting.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 10:19AM
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alisande

I don't understand early voting. Is it allowed in some states but not in others? I would think the advantage is not having to wait on line, but the stories here would indicate that's not so.

The population where I live is so small that I've never had to wait. Say hi to all the people you know outside the building, walk in, vote, have a pretzel, walk out. Say bye to all the people you know outside. :-)

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 2:15PM
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bigfoot_liz

alisande, the waiting in line is concerning here because only 25% of the population who voted in 2008 has already voted early. Plus 50% more voted in my county alone. That means 75% of the rest will probably hit the polls Tue. Granted there are many more polling places open. A HUGE factor in the lines is the fact that in Seminole Co my ballot was 4 pages long, Orange Co (orlando) is 6 pages, some county in FL has a 10 pg ballot :-0 VERY time consuming! while I educated myself ahead and filled out a sample ballot when I was walking out of the polling place I over heard conversations about some just starting to read the amendments :-0 ~ liz

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 4:01PM
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pammyfay

Virginia doesn't have "early voting" -- that is, for anyone who wants to show up early on certain days. Virginia has only "absentee ballot voting," which is mail-in or walk-up, and supposedly there are only certain circumstances under which you can get an absentee ballot (tho I've heard the name-checkers at the desks are very lenient about those).

Especially during presidential elections, I think early voting would be beneficial both to the name-checkers and the voters -- shorter lines, less stress on the name-checkers and the electronic voting machines. (Last regular election, the name-checker couldn't even spot my name in the registry -- I had to point it out, and I was reading the list upside down!)

Our neighboring state of Maryland as well as D.C. have early voting, and those lines were quite long. But still, I say spread it out, whichever way is possible.

(Straying a bit from the topic: Did you know there are several foreign countries that have compulsory voting? Failure to vote could mean fines, trouble getting a public-sector job, trouble getting a new driver's license or passport ... )

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 4:05PM
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drewsmaga

bigfoot_liz, we moved from Houston to Oviedo a year ago. The problems with early voting here are 1) There are so many amendments and so much reading to try to figure them out, that if people hadn't figured then out ahead of time, it would bog things down, 2) Not enough polling places for early voting, 3) PAPER BALLOTS!!!!! It's 2012 and we have paper ballots that you have to hunt down a marker and then fill in the ovals. It's quicker to push a button. And if I made a mistake I could go back and change it. Heaven forbid I make a mistake on a paper ballot -- would they re-issue me one? How long would that take? Maybe that's why the line moved so slowly?

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 11:49PM
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jennmonkey

I love Washington's mail/drop box only voting. I got my ballot a couple of weeks ago and could spend as long as I wanted reading all the pamphlets (which takes awhile!). No pressure to hurry because you've been waiting in line or people are waiting for you. I mailed it in last week. You can check and make sure it's been received too.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 12:45AM
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lily316

I wish voting was uniform thru out the country. I like Washington's way the best.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 2:38AM
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lisa_fla

I don't understand why some people(like DH) would wait in a long line to early vote. I don't remember ever having to wait long on election day. I like the excitement! Liz is right-the ballots here are very long. I stayed up till 1 am researching some local candidates.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 8:31AM
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bigfoot_liz

the amendments were 1 reason I voted early, I printed out several different articles on explaining them so I fully understood what I voted for. Some amendments sounded like you would vote no if you were opposed but you voted yes to oppose. Another reason is I can't miss work, Tue is one of my busiest days (there is no one else to do my job), if I had to wait in line i would be taking close to 60 cell ph calls per hour there LOL! We also had a 7am meeting today where we found out that if we wanted to vote in the afternoon we could leave & do so, if we had not already voted, everyone has! :-) We are VERY proactive in dem. politics here so those of us in the office made sure we had everyone registered and got everyone printed out early ballots & explanations of amendments. sometimes i just LOVE this place i work @! I have heard lines in Orange co are long today, a few clients waited more than 1 hr in Seminole too.

drewsmaga the early voting period was cut back 7 days and polling places cut in half for early voting this year. A form of suppression to me! I can safely say that will not be happening next time LOL there have been SOOO may problems w Floriduh voting again...lawsuits are already being worked on :-) Paper is as good as we are gonna get I think. we had a huge problem w hanging chads in 2000 and machines in 2004 so I'm not sure machines would ever catch on universally. I've been hearing about some machine abnormalities down south but not sure how much truth there is to them yet... ~ liz

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 12:47PM
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gibby2015

I voted this morning - on election day like I always do. No line at 7:30am. Maybe because all kinds of people chose to wait in line for hours before election day - their loss, my gain.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 1:07PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

My friend and I had gone the first day of early voting and the line was crazy long so we left, waited till Thursday went at about 2pm very short line, in and out in less than 20 minutes. My husband went Friday morning and had a much longer line but he said it was moving very fast.
Here the polls are saying we are having great numbers of voters which is good.

But even in the early voting some states were reporting problems, I read an article in one state there were some machines that no matter what you entered as your selection in the last step it defaulted to Democrat. Several people luckily were paying attention to the final step and caught it so were able to correct it. The officials said it happens every year that it was because the machines need to be calibrated. Well if they know that then why the heck did they not calibrate the darn things before letting people start to vote on them.
I paid attention to every single step on mine to make sure nothing had changed.

If interested here are some of the articles
Guilford Co. voters say ballot cast for Romney came up Obama on machine
More voting problems reported in Jamestown, Pleasant Garden

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 1:45PM
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cynic

We too don't have "early voting", rather absentee voting option. There's a number of criteria to be able to use absentee and I use it often. I believe in voting and I think this year is an important year to vote anyway. I went in to vote absentee on Saturday and there had to be 40-50 people in line and it was about 1/2 hour before closing. I filled out my application and this one lady insisted I go ahead of her. I politely declined and said I'll wait my turn but she was adamant. Said it would just take longer since they take handicapped first. Really nice of her. I knew how I was voting so it didn't take me long to vote per se, but it still took about 1/2 hour. I haven't taken a drive by any polls to see what they look like today. This state generally has a pretty good turnout. Don't know what the estimates are but I'd guess 70%-75% wouldn't be out of the question.

I remember when I was working campaigns and "our side" got a frantic call from a voter who said she voted for our candidate and when she checked the ballot it showed the opponent. It was the days of punchcards. Long before "dangling chads" became common vernacular. Not much to do about it but we had as many people as we could get a hold of double check their ballots to see if there was any similar incidents. Campaigns were a lot of work, but a lot of fun. And a real sense of pride and accomplishment even if your side lost. You really did learn a lot about people and about the system. That's why I encourage people to get involved instead of whining "it doesn't make a difference..."

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 5:28PM
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phyllis__mn

We vote at City Hall, and it was quite busy today when I got there. So busy, in fact, that I was sent to the kitchen area to fill out my ballot, and pretty soon another woman was there, too, standing by the sink doing her voting. Some people were sitting at a long table with good spacing between them. It was just so unusual, as I think we have always just waited until a booth was available.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 9:32PM
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joann23456

Massachusetts doesn't have early voting, other than absentee ballots.

I am very fortunate. I walk one block to my polling place and have never waited more than 10 minutes, and get to visit with neighbors. I'm in a small city in the northeast.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 11:57PM
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