Early voting starts tomorrow, and many say they plan on taking advantage of the pre-Election Day hours. Mary from North Miami writes:
I like the feeling of participation and community that comes with standing in line with neighbors I don't even know. But there's a limit to the number of hours I want to devote to this experience, and I want to make sure my vote gets in, so I'll probably be voting early next week.
The ballot is notoriously long this year because of 11 proposed state constitutional amendments. Some listeners say they want to review those questions at their own pace in the comfort of their home. Jim from Miami says:
I have already cast my vote via absentee ballot. I wanted to take the time while home to read carefully the many items requiring my vote. Hate to feel rushed and the wait in lines will no doubt give many a hurried feeling. This particular election is way too important to rush and not concentrate.
For others, there's a certain special feeling that comes with voting on Election Day itself. For Ellen, who teaches American Government at a Miami-Dade public school, November 6th will be a family occasion. She writes:
I love the excitement of voting on Election Day. The other reason that I will wait...is that my 18 year-old daughter, a virgin voter, is driving down from college so that we can be together on her first experience voting. We are obviously political junkies and I am proud to say that I raised an ethical 21st century citizen.
Memories of the 2000 election, however, continue to haunt Florida voters. Tanya from Miami Beach says:
[M]y biggest fear is that once again we will find a way to screw up the count....that somehow early votes won't count, that things will be "lost", that computers will magically mis-tally...it is florida after all, and carl hiassen hasn't written all those books based on nothing!
But maybe all of Florida's snafus and scandals - the fake letters, the missing or misprinted ballots - have made us more vigilant about the right to vote --- because if the 2000 election taught us anything, it's that elections can be decided by a mere 537.