Election day polls in Broward and Palm Beach

2018-11-16T15:31:59+00:00 November 6th, 2018|News, Politics|
Polls close at 7 p.m. EST in South Florida
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At around 7:30 a.m. Democrat Rachel Jeanfrancois said she came to the Coral Springs Center for the Arts to avoid a long line at the polls later in the day.

Jeanfrancois waited for her younger sister, Nahomie, to finish casting her vote.

Nahomie Jeanfrancois took the initiative in waking everyone in her household early enough to vote this morning.

Their younger brother attends Marjory Stoneman Douglas and had been present at the massacre on Feb. 14.

“My brother is not of age to vote yet,” said Nahomie Jeanfrancois. “So I wanted to be his voice.”

— Victoria Salas, South Florida News Service 

Ann-Mari Daley campaigning for her son, Dan Daley, outside of the Coral Springs Center for the Arts the “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” plays from her Bluetooth speaker. (Victoria Salas/SFNS)

Ann-Mari Daley campaigning for her son, Dan Daley, outside of the Coral Springs Center for the Arts the “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” plays from her Bluetooth speaker. (Victoria Salas/SFNS)

Vero Beach resident Ann-Mari Daley came to Coral Springs Center for the Arts for her son Dan Daley, who is running for reelection to Coral Springs City Commission.

Although Ann-Mari Daley is a Republican, she said she is an advocate for putting whoever is most qualified into office, regardless of party

“It was embarrassing to see some of the Republicans’ and Democrats’ behavior at the polls,” she said.

— Victoria Salas, South Florida News Service 

Maureen Hedigan speaking to firefighter Ronnie Abou as she walks out of the polls at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts (Victoria Salas/SFNS)

Maureen Hedigan usually does not vote in midterm elections, she said. However, today she voted at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts at around 8:30 a.m.

She said she did research on her candidates in order to vote confidently, and urged her 39-year-old twin daughters to vote as well.

“I didn’t like what was happening on both sides,” said Hedigan. “I have to look at what makes sense for me and my kids and my grandkids.”

Despite coming from a family of Democrats and picking candidates that are the most sensible to her, Hedigan affiliates herself with the Republican Party.

— Victoria Salas, South Florida News Service 

Joshua Simmons campaigning on Election Day outside the Coral Springs Center for the Arts at around 9 a.m. on Election Day. (Victoria Salas/SFNS)

Joshua Simmons, a 31-year-old government teacher at Coral Springs High School, is running for Coral Springs City Commission Seat 4 for the first time. He has been campaigning for about two years and said he has knocked on over 5,000 doors.

If he is elected, he will be the first person of color to hold a seat on the Coral Springs City Commission.

“People want someone to fight for them and if I can do that I’m good,” said Simmons. “It’s like I found myself through this process.”

— Victoria Salas, South Florida News Service 

Billy Amon, 36, stands outside of the Satory Senior Center in Coral Springs with signs reading “Yes on 13.” (Sherrilyn Cabrera/SFNS)

Billy Amon, 36, is a Florida Democratic Party volunteer who is advocating for Amendment 13 to be passed at the Satory Senior Center in Coral Springs.

This amendment will phase out dog racing in the state of Florida, but lets facilities keep their gambling rights.

“It’s about time Florida gets rid of dog racing, it’s cruel and inhumane,” said Amon. “It’s a dying industry anyway, they’re losing money.”

Amon plans to spend a few more hours at the senior center and then plans to switch his campaigning for the Democratic nominees.

“I’m gonna go volunteer for the Florida Democrats, try to get Gillum elected, Nelson re-elected so Rick Scott does not get his seat,” said Amon.

— Sherrilyn Cabrera, South Florida News Service 

Lazor Ditman, with pamphlets in hand, stands outside of the Coral Springs Center for the Arts in Coral Springs. (Sherrilyn Cabrera/SFNS)

Lazor Ditman is a poll worker at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts in Coral Springs, and campaigns for the Florida Republican Party on his time off.

Ditman said if Democratic Governor Nominee Andrew Gillum wins, he will be unable to get things done for Florida because of his refusal to cooperate with President Donald Trump.

“DeSantis is buddies with the President, he bugs the hell out of the President to get things done in Florida,” said Ditman. “Gillum is not going to get it done.”

Ditman said he is against Gillum’s proposal of making Florida a sanctuary state for immigrants.

“It’s going to bring a lot of crime here, a lot of illegal immigration,” said Ditman. “I want to be safe here. I want my wife to be able to walk down the street and be safe.”

— Sherrilyn Cabrera, South Florida News Service

Farbod Tehranian speaking to voters outside the Pembroke Pines City Hall. (Bryan Rivero/SFNS)

Broward County’s Congressional District 23 features long-time representative Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, who is currently trying to hold on to her seat in congress. 

In 2016, Tim Canova ran against her in primary elections with endorsements from Bernie Sanders, but still fell short. Today he is running against her as an Independent.

Farbod Tehranian, an assistant in Canova’s campaign, is volunteering his time outside of the Pembroke Pines City Hall. 

“I am a registered Democrat and I do support Democrats most of the time, but not Debbie Wasserman-Shultz,” said Tehranian.

Wasserman-Shultz, the former head of the Democratic National Committee, resigned shorty after the Democratic National Convention is 2016.

“She likes to say she’s for climate change, but when it comes to bills in congress she does not co-sponsor them,” said Tehranian.

— Bryan Rivero, South Florida News Service

Abrianna Jean-Baptiste speaking to other students at Broward College South Campus. (Bryan Rivero/SFNS)

Abrianna Jean-Baptiste, a student at Broward College and resident of Miami Gardens, stressed how important it was to vote in this election. 

“A lot is in our hands and this election is one of them,” said Jean-Baptiste.

Jean-Baptiste is also a strong supporter of Mayor Andrew Gillum in this election’s race for governor. 

“I wanted to vote for someone that I feel would make an impact within the community in Miami Dade and Broward. I feel like Gillum will really be there for us, as he is trying to become the first black governor in the state,” said Jean-Baptiste.

— Bryan Rivero, South Florida News Service

Cary Nation (left), 72, precinct captain of the Democratic Party, on Nov. 6, 2018 (Fátima Cajas/SFNS)

Cary Nation arrived at Florida Atlantic University at 7 a.m. and plans to stay till 7 p.m. for this year’s midterm election’s.

“It is my civic duty to help my party vote,” said Nation.

Her motivation is to get back to a time of civility.

“I am very fearful about how President Trump is dividing our country this is one America and the Republicans are not treating that well,” she said. “We have about 400 remaining Democrats that haven’t vote yet in this particular precinct.” 

She encourages everyone to vote, especially young people, because politics and elections are important and impact our lives.

Fátima Cajas, South Florida News Service

Robyn Raymond, 57, holds up a sign just outside of a Broward College parking garage encouraging students to gocast their vote at around 2:30 p.m. on Nov. 6. (Asha Lewis/SFNS)

Robyn Raymond, 57, sported an Andrew Gillum t-shirt while she passed out flyers to students at Broward College’s main campus in Davie, FL.

“I am out here volunteering,” said Raymond. “I’ve been here since seven this morning trying to get students to go to the polls because they do not understand how important their vote is.” 

Raymond is a Democrat and voted in favor of her party because she believes in democracy.

“I want environmental protection, women’s rights, equality for people of color, gun control but most of all I want my choice and I want my voice to be heard,” she said. “Students are the future and that is why I am out here trying to get students to understand that their opinion matters a lot more than they realize.”

Raymond has voted yes on Amendment 4, which restores voting rights to felons after they have served their time.

“It is only fair,” she said. “After all, it is our duty, our privilege and our right. People in the past have died to vote so now that it is free, why not?”

Asha Lewis, South Florida News Service

Leslie Csokay speaking to voters at New Renaissance Middle School in Miramar. (Bryan Rivero/SFNS)

At New Renaissance Middle School in Miramar, Leslie Csokay, a board member of the National Greyhound Association, is campaigning to vote “no” on Amendment 13 about greyhound racing.

“After racing there is a 10 to 15 percent adoption rate for the dogs. We believe the dogs are purposely breed and raised for racing which gives them purpose,” said Csokay.

Many, including Csokay, wonder what will happen if the amendment passes with a “yes” instead of a “no.” According to the American People’s Committee, there will be over 3,000 people without jobs. 

“We have these dogs taken care of. We have 102 adoption groups helping us,” she said.

Csokay emphasized how all greyhound kennels in the state are inspected. She said there is no tolerance for animal abuse.

Bryan Rivero, South Florida News Service

Nick Cunningham, 19, stands outside of the Coral Springs Center for the Arts after voting. (Sherrilyn Cabrera/ SFNS)

Nick Cunningham, 19, stands outside of the Coral Springs Center for the Arts after voting. (Sherrilyn Cabrera/ SFNS)

Nick Cunningham, 19, who recently graduated from Coral Springs Charter School, voted for the first time at the Coral Springs Center for the Arts.

Cunningham said he is affiliated with no particular party, but had an idea of who he was going to vote for.

“I wanted to read about everything and everyone first,” said Cunningham about making his decision. “It was pretty cool to put my own sense into it, I’ve always just watched and observed from a distance.”

Coral Springs Charter School is located only seven minutes away from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Cunningham said the shooting shook his classmates and himself that day, almost a year ago.

“It definitely motivated me more to come out here today,” said Cunningham.

— Sherrilyn Cabrera, South Florida  News Service