I got it out of the way right when the polls opened this morning. It took me about three minutes to cast my ballot. Nice people wearing all smiles greeted me at the polling entrance and pointed me in the proper direction. A friend of mine who went to vote during at lunch, however, suffered a little voter vertigo. I listened sympathetically as he described his first-ever experience at the polls. He showed up at the wrong site, he got in line for the wrong precinct, and when I asked him if anyone reminded him to return tonight for the caucus, he responded in silence … followed by a “huh?”
He went on to describe his confusion about the “fax machine” he had to slide his ballot through after filling it out. I suppressed a giggle when he asked me why all those other people (besides the presidential candidates) were on his sheet. Okay, I may have poked a little fun at his naiveté but I wasn’t mean and I tried to explain the things I understand (which didn’t take long). I was however surprised when he told me an impatient lady manning the polls sighed heavily and borderline-mocked him for not understanding where to go or exactly what to do.
I mean it’s no secret that this election is all wrapped up in youth and inexperience. More than a few Obama-maniacs are voting for the first time. Maybe in all the excitement no one taught them the logistics. It’s great that the Democratic primaries have garnished so much excitement but will the voting experience be too painful for some to repeat when it counts the most?
My friend (who might be a relative but I’m not going to say because I kinda said he’s a dummy) was impressed with all the energy at the Democratic polling place, as opposed to the Republican area where "there was only one white-haired couple" that joked with him to stay and help ’em out. It’s been reported that only one major Texas city has had a larger republican turnout than Democratic.
Some early polls say this thing is going to be a real nail-biter.
Democrats need to know to return to their precinct at 7:15 p.m. tonight – other than that, when you’re out there, if you see someone looking confused, help, don’t snicker. This decision may rest on getting people to the polls and making sure they do what they came to do.
Here’s some East Dallas video footage …
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