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Early voting in Florida not extended despite long lines

By Samantha Kimmey
Saturday, November 3, 2012 0:31 EDT
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Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R). Photo: Creative Commons.
 
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Florida Gov. Rick. Scott denied a request from the League of Women Voters and Florida Democrats on Friday to extend early voting, according to the News-Press. Long lines and record turnout prompted the call, but Scott reiterated that “Early voting will end Saturday night,” although he said he wants “everyone to get out to vote.”

Reported lines up to five hours long have not swayed the governor, and a Florida Republican party leader said it’s wrong “for one side to demand that we break the law because they feel like they are losing.”

Florida shortened its early voting period from 14 days in 2008 to eight days this year, and liberals accused the Republican-controlled legislature of trying to depress Democratic turnout.

Florida Democratic Party’s Executive Director Scott Arceneaux told WFSU, “You’ve got lines so long in Miami that people are waiting four and five hours every day. The elderly are getting tired, they need places to sit.”

About 1,300,000 Democrats have voted so far in both early and absentee voting, compared to about 1,240,000 Republicans and 518,000 affiliated with other parties.

A spokesperson for the Florida Department of State said that while there are 300 sites for early voting, there will be 6,000 sites to vote in the state on election day, “So, voters have several ways to vote on their schedule.”

[Image via Creative Commons]

 
 
 
 
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