Early Voting Ended Saturday But Absentee Voting Continues

Voters stand in line to pick up their absentee ballots in Doral, Fla., Sunday, Nov. 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

At an early voting site in Miami Saturday people waited six hours to cast a ballot.

In response to the long lines, Democrats suited to extend early voting and some elections supervisors opened up their offices for in-person absentee voting.

“Actually, I was going to vote tomorrow,” said Chris Jenkins when our reporter asked him, “Did you wake up this morning knowing you were going to vote?”

Monday morning word spread fast that the Leon County Courthouse was open for absentee voting.

Some voters were confused, they though they were casting an early ballot but in-person absentee voting is a little different. Instead of running the ballots through a voting machine, the votes are placed in envelopes.

There was also confusion about the 100 foot boundary for campaigning outside a polling site. This candidate decided to play it safe.

Another difference between voting in-person absentee or voting early or on Election Day is our cameras are allowed inside while people are casting ballots.

“I would say this is a component of what’s already there,” said Rep. Alan Williams.

Representative Alan Williams and other Democrats are promoting in-person absentee voting as a way around a new law cutting early voting from 14 days to eight. “We want to make it easier and that is why we voted against House Bill 1355 because they had provisions in there that made it tougher for folks to vote.”

Democrats filed legal challenges against the law but several federal judges found no problems with the changes.

So far more than 4.4 million Floridians have voted. During early voting 300 polling site were opened statewide. Tuesday, on Election Day, 6,000 sites will be opened from 7:00a.m. to 7:00p.m.

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