Five Miami-Dade commissioners put forth a symbolic resolution at last week’s meeting urging state lawmakers and Gov. Rick Scott to restore 14 days of early voting — including the Sunday before Election Day, which African-American churches used to mobilize voters to the polls.
But Chairman Joe Martinez took issue with the suggestion that minorities would need more voting days.
“I resent that,” he said. “We used to have only one day. Now we have early voting, we have absentee voting, we have everything. ... I just think that if you’re a responsible voter, you should need to go and vote.”
The eight early-voting days allowed by law should be plenty, he added, noting that it would cost more to return to the 14 days available before the Legislature changed the law last year.
Commissioner Barbara Jordan countered that the eight days should extend from Sunday to Sunday.
“That is truly a message to the community that you care enough to try and get people out to vote and not discourage them,” she said.
The board approved the resolution, 9-2.