As election day for the Florida Primary approached, students from Florida International University asked voters throughout South Florida why they decided to vote. Their answers were as varied as the diverse community in which they live.
To me voting in the primary is really important because I’m a Democrat and not all Democrats are the same. You have corporate Democrats, Democrats who take money from the sugar industry, money from the private prison industry and those aren’t people who align with my values as a Democrat.=
- Sabrina Javellana, outside the Student Government Office on FIU’s Biscayne Bay Campus on Aug. 27
For Andrew Gillum. This is my first time voting during a primary election and we’re all obviously voting for multiple seats but he’s the main reason I’m here. He ran a strong campaign and I’m here to support it by voting for him.”
- Isis Ewers, 27, at Miami Beach City Hall on Aug. 24
Because we want to choose the right representatives to work in the office.
- Dorothy Hazard at the Supervisor of Elections building in West Palm Beach on Aug. 28
I’m here supporting Pepe Diaz just like the rest of the Hispanic Police Officer Association for all the times he has supported us.
- Ashlie Garamillo, 23, at North Park Trail in Miami on Aug. 28
Because my professor told us it was important. He told us he would give us extra credit so here I am.
- Janelly Michel, 18, outside South Dade Regional Library on Aug. 27
I feel like my vote counts towards making a big difference. Especially since it will cause Florida to have its first black governor in 2018. That’s history being made there when it happens.
- Fleurette Fleurant at the North Miami library on Aug. 27
I feel it’s my right and duty to vote today, regardless of how it fits into my schedule. Everyone should. Are you voting for anyone or anything specifically? All Republican, if you saw someone in line wearing a Make America Great Again hat, it was probably me.
- Michael Durant at the Pembroke Pines YMCA on Aug. 28
I’m a power voter. I care about the community.
- Carmen Betenancourt at the Kendall Regional Library on Aug. 24
This was my first time and it was hard looking up all these people. But I definitely, wanted to vote because we need more people in Congress that support disability and want to generate funding for people who are medically or mentally disabled.
- Katery Perez, 26, at the Royal Ballrooms Banquet Hall in University Park on Aug. 28
Because I want to. I want to change the government we have right now.
- Evalina Larreal, 36, at Kendale Elementary School in Miami
God knows it’s been the worst. This has been the worst couple of years and I’ve been around long enough to know that this is absolutely the worst. By voting I also want to set a good example and teach young folks that their vote matters.
- Joanne Selbach, 71, outside the Tamarac Branch Library
Because I believe our country and communities deserve leaders that will make a difference. There is too much going on that needs to be addressed and work at hard and fairly. People are not thinking about the consequences of a bad judgement and or an unfair bias towards the leaders that are not looking at the bigger picture. One vote will not make a difference, but it will for me!
- Blanca Esther Salamin, 58, at the West-Dade Regional Library Aug. 26
I am voting because I want to see a continuation of the success that we have seen throughout the last few years. I am mainly here to vote for governor. The candidate I voted for will be a great governor for our state.
- Omar Williams, 35, at the North Dade Regional Library on Aug. 24
I decided to vote because is our civic duty as citizens. I want to see changes and is according to our vote that we are going to see the change.
- Sandy Sotomayor, 72 at the North Miami library on Aug. 24
Even though it is still early, I would like to start thinking about my country’s future and what options we have for the general elections. Clearly like many Americans, I was not happy with the past elections and now that I have the right to vote, I want to have my vote noticed.”
- Ivette Velazquez, 22, at Kendale Lakes Elementary on Aug. 28
To represent a vote because I am a citizen and to represent Latins. To make an effort for us, Latins.
- Enexida Maria Liriano at the Hispanic Branch Library on Aug. 28 in Miami
We figured that if we voted, whatever happens in our communities can lead to the national level. We’re happy here in our own communities, it should bring some happiness to that other spot.
- Lyndale Pettus, 62, at the Miramar Library on Aug. 24
Written by: Gerard Albert III, Jessica Barrios, Fatima Cajas, Lisette Delgado, Amber Diaz, Lanna Exilus, Silvio Falcone, Steve Guilen, Adrialys Gutierrez, Edda Leon, Asha Lewis, Vanessa Morales, Bryan Rivero, Gabriela Rodriguez- Garcia, Alejandro Silva, Yeskanisayka Urbina and Alexandra Yun