Good morning, family! Thus far, Florida Gov. Rick Scott has rejected calls to extend early voting to Sunday, November 4 to accommodate heavy voter turnout throughout the state. Voters have stood in line for several hours to cast their ballot. An elderly woman at the early voting site in Aventura, passed out after several hours of standing in the hot sun. Emergency medical technicians removed her by ambulance for medical treatment. The woman was African-American and presumed to be a President Obama supporter, so her inability to cast a ballot was a victory for the Republican strategy of voter suppression in Florida.
Previous Republican governors in Florida, Charlie Crist and Jeb Bush wisely extended Early Voting hours during their administration. Gov. Scott has ignored pleas from the Florida Democratic Party, the League of Women Voters and former Senator Dan Gelber.
The Governor’s refusal to extend Early Voting by one day is shameful. It is also a reflection of the suppressive voting environment in Florida and the lack of respect for the citizens of Florida, including some of the most vulnerable --- the elderly and military veterans.
Since the Governor refuses to respect our basic human rights, let’s continue to make lemonade out these lemons. Perhaps some of our civic organizations can help individuals enduring these long early voting lines by providing water to combat dehydration and umbrellas for shade from the sun, especially for the elderly.
Tomorrow is the last day for Early Voting. No matter how funky the situation is a your voting site, remember the following:
1. DO NOT LEAVE before voting. If you leave, you will be playing into the hands of the Republicans who don’t want you to fully-engage in the process.
2. DO NOT VOTE ONLY IN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE. There are several important races and questions that should be voted on. You are expected to become discouraged by the unnecessarily long ballot and simply not vote on some other important items like Senator; retention of Supreme Court Justices; County Questions and constitutional amendments.
3. IF YOU ARE IN LINE AT 7PM WHEN THE POLLS ARE SCHEDULED TO CLOSE, DO NOT LEAVE WITHOUT VOTING. No matter what you are told by elections officials, remember you are entitled to vote if you are already in line at 7 p.m.
Peace, Light, Love and 💋Smooches...