Election Protection - Florida 2004
November 02, 2004
Report From Sunday's Early Voting In Dade County, Florida

Here's the introductory post
that goes with this one.

Here was Steve Shapiro's report from Sunday on his "Election Protection" assignment in Florida.

Here are some photos from fellow Election Protection member Gail.

Steve says:

We are at the caleb center in the Model City neighborhood -- a community center that was built after the 1980 riots - has become the center of a lot of activity. This is one of the early voting places. The poll is officially closed at 5pm -- but there are still 2-3 hours of people.

Yesterday there were about 600 people in line when the polls closed at 5pm.

Voting is taken extrordinarily seriosly - peole are on a mission to make sure that their vote counts.

So they give numbers and call for people to vote. so they just stop giving out numbers at 5. It works like the priority ticket system for music concerts. Once people get their number, that can move about. So people were sitting in no particular order, and there were a lot of kids and families around.

We're working today with the Miami Dade Election Reform coalition -- another non-partisan coalition to learn about the electronic voting machines. They got a small grant to organize people to go out and witness the closing up procedures.

It's inspiring. They've given up their whole day to do this. The Election Protection people were taking complaints from people. The only complaint is that it takes too long. It's just that there are so many people.

Florida law says that they have to ask you for ID, but you don't have to supply it unless you're a first time voter who has never voted before. You can sign an affadivit. Every state has a different law as far as that goes.

We haven't had any incidents in the last three days AT ALL -- so everybody that showed up to vote has been allowed to - their names has been on the list.

On Tuesday they will be run by different people. The people running the early voting

Early voting can take place at any one of the 14 regional centers in Dade county, but on Tuesday you have to go to your correct precinct, which are smaller. There's only two places where the precinct your registered with doesn't matter -- and those are official county offices.

They lost a lawsuit by the AFLCIO among others that would have made it OK to use a provisional ballot if you go to the wrong precinct. But they lost, so you do need to go to the correct precinct.

These "early voting" folks are working from a comprehensive list of all eligible. The list Tuesday will be the same list with "eligible, voted absentee, voted early, etc." noted so there won't be any duplicate voting.

The Broward county to the north have had more problems - not enough sites, not enough machines - more problems at the polls. Broward county is the same county that lost 58,000 absentee ballots -- people never received them. Said it was the post offices problem. They supposedly re-mailed them out -- friday -- so anyone out of state won't get theirs in time. Just for tonight, (Sunday) we will be there to montior with the election reform coalition.

Posted by Lisa at November 02, 2004 02:24 PM | TrackBack
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