Painless voting in Hialeah; Fire station precinct in Miami Beach; Voting by gender

2016-11-08T21:00:20+00:00 November 8th, 2016|News, Pickups, Politics|

[1:32 pm] Rafael Tur, who voted in East Hialeah, said the process was painless. 

Tur, 26, said he cast his vote for Donald Trump, because he believes the New York billionaire can fix the broken political system. 

Tur said he wasn’t always a fan, something that changed after working at Trump National in Doral for a few months starting in 2013. 

“His way of management is great, “ he said. “All of the employees are treated with respect, he invests his time and money well and it was a diverse environment.”

He said he even agrees with Trump’s stance on immigration.

“Even though I’m Hispanic, I agree with it,” said Tur. “It’s a tough pill to swallow, but it’s got to be done.”

In the Miami-Dade County mayoral race, he said he voted for challenger Raquel Regalado over incumbent Carlos Gimenez.

“I voted for Regalado because Gimenez is a corrupt man that steals money from so many, including first responders,” said Tur. “To me, he’s the scum of the Earth.”

In the US Senate race, Tur voted for Marco Rubio, though he said he had mixed emotions. 

“For me, he’s a little too liberal and though I think it’s good to see someone come from nothing, as he has, it always raises a few eyebrows because of the corruption in politics,” he said.

— Brandon Gonzalez, South Florida News Service 

[1:43 pm] Republican State Sen. Anitere Flores, 40, has campaign workers at every polling site west of Southwest 127th Avenue. The incumbent is being challenged by Democratic candidate Debbie Mucarsel-Powell for the District 39 seat, which stretches from Key West to Hendry County in the state’s interior.

As of the late morning Tuesday, Flores’s campaign was the only one present at the Marvel Banquet Hall polling site located at 2717 Southwest 142nd Ave. 

“It’s been very calm here since about 8:30 am,” said Johanna Hoyos, 25, in Spanish. “But it’s been great for us that we’re the only campaign here.”

Flores herself was at a precinct a few blocks away, talking to voters and campaign staff. She said she was “blessed” to have so much support. 

“We’ve been in the same community our entire lives so we’re blessed to have support from people I went to grade school and high school with as well as my extended family,” she said.

Flores said she spent most of her morning in the northern part of the district and will travel around Homestead polling sites later this afternoon. 

— Leo Cosio, South Florida News Service 

[2:35 pm] Neil Bernal, 18, a self-proclaimed “die-hard Republican,” said he came out to vote at Barbara Goldman High School specifically for Donald Trump. He believes Trump will better serve the interests of people like Bernal’s hard-working mother.

“Hillary is for the people who don’t like to work. Trump is for the hard workers and he’s going to change the country,” he said.

His mother also encouraged him to vote for Marco Rubio, Florida’s incumbent Republican senator.

“He tried to run for president. So, let’s give him a second chance,” he said.

However, Bernal said he knew very little about the Miami-Dade mayoral race.

“I’m Hispanic, so I picked Gimenez because it was the first Spanish name I saw on the ballot,” he said.

— Yaneli Gonzalez, South Florida News Service

[2:39 pm] Christina Thompson, who voted in the early afternoon, said there’s no secret about who wasn’t getting her vote. 

“As a black woman, I could never vote for Trump,” she said.

The Bahamian talk show host of “Reality Check” said she got lucky with the voting lines today, saying her precinct is usually much more crowded. 

Though she voted for her, Thompson said she’s doesn’t aways agree with Hilary Clinton. But one thing stood out: her work with children.

“Hillary has always stood up for children, that is big for me,” she said. “What matters more than anything is that someone in office makes sure that the benefits are for all, children included.”

The Democrat cast her votes for Patrick Murphy in the US Senate race, as well as Raquel Regalado for Miami-Dade mayor.

“No one is perfect, but you have to pick who will do the best,” said Thompson. “Hillary and Murphy aren’t always ideal, but unlike Trump, at least they know policy.”

— Brandon Gonzalez, South Florida News Service

[2:49 pm] Walking on the school’s main campus, FIU student Brenda Wong, 20, said she did early voting because she didn’t want to leave it for the last minute and the precinct was close to her house.

She said she’s been particularly active this election, watching all the debates and following various social media channels to stay informed. 

When it came to voting for the president, Wong said she knew she wouldn’t vote for “someone whose racist…and sexist.”

“You know who I’m talking about,” she said.

While Wong said she felt she had enough information on the presidential elections to make a decision, the other candidates on the ballot were another story.

“I felt lost in the ballot,” she said.

Wong tried to research the other candidates that were on her ballot but said it was extremely difficult to find enough information on them to feel educated enough to decide. The lack of readily available information, she said, is why she chose to vote based on party and gender.

“I’m gonna be honest,” she said. “If [the candidate] was a woman, I voted for them because women need to have more opportunities in positions of higher power.”

While she wished more information was more easily available on the state and local elections, she did go in knowing about the different amendments, such as the one on medical marijuana.

“It’s really interesting that Florida was considering it,” Wong said.

She voted “yes” for the amendment but doesn’t think it’s going to pass.

“Because you know how Florida is,” said Wong. 

— Michelle Marchante, South Florida News Service

[3:03 pm] Privacy booths may have temporarily displaced the usual parking space of a recuse vehicle at Miami Beach Fire Station 3, but voting was as quick as an ambulance shooting through traffic.

Voter Alison Feldman said whole process took all of five minutes. 

The registered Republican cast her vote for Hillary Clinton in part because of her daughter. 

“There are certain things I believe in from the Republican party, and there are certain things I believe in from the Democratic party,” she said. “Over the past year, things have changed. Now, having a one-year-old daughter, [Clinton] will be better off for my daughter.”

— Jamie Adelson, South Florida News Service 

[3:13 pm] Exiting the Westland Gardens Park voting precinct, Lourdes Garcia, a Democrat and 26-year-old middle-school science teacher at Mater Academy, said this is the year of the ladies.

For the presidential race, she chose Clinton because of her gender and because of her stance on environmental issues.

“Being a science teacher, I’m looking for whoever is going to watch out for the environment and out of the two candidates I believe Clinton has a better shot, and that’s also according to a few environmentalists I agree with,” she said.

Garcia also said that while she may agree with some of Trump’s business knowledge, she prefers having a long-established politician making the country’s toughest decisions.

For the mayoral race, Garcia voted for Raquel Regalado.

“One, because she is a democrat, and two because she is a woman, and this is the year of the ladies, so let’s put them in office,” she said.

When asked if she thinks the election is rigged, Garcia said, “I don’t believe it’s rigged, but if it is, I think Trump is going to win.”

— Yaneli Gonzalez, South Florida News Service

[3:25 pm] The Democratic candidate for US Senate, Patrick Murphy, and former Senator Bob Graham campaigned together at the Mary Collins Community Center in Miami Lakes during the late morning.

Murphy took the stage to explain why he deserves voters’ choice. 

“I want them to know I’m going to fight for them,” he said. “I’m going to fight for what I believe in – what’s best for Florida – similar to Senator Bob Graham who always put the country and the state first before his party.” 

Graham, for his part, said Murphy is more than worthy to fill the post. 

“I’m excited about the candidates we have. Candidates like Patrick Murphy could bring energy and enthusiasm, and real commitment to Florida,” said Graham.

— Yaneli Gonzalez, South Florida News Service

[5:01 pm] Martha Garcia, the owner of Jolie Royale, voted with one goal in mind.

“Make America Great Again,” she said.

Garcia came to Miami during the Pedro Pan operation and has always been very proud of being a Republican. The Democratic Party, she said, treated Cubans very poorly in the past and Hillary Clinton is definitely not the answer to America’s future.

“She’s a liar,” Garcia said. “Nothing sticks to her.”

She said she likes Trump because he “says everything everyone is thinking.”

Her support for Trump is also the reason why she didn’t vote for incumbent Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez.

“He was for Hillary,” said Garcia. 

— Michelle Marchante, South Florida News Service