Obama’s campaign pioneered in-person (or “in-office”) absentee voting at the beginning of October — as a way to give people another option to cast ballots early but not have to rely on the mail system. With in-person absentee ballots, a voter must actually have the ballot inside the elections office headquarters — not his or her neighborhood precinct — by 7 p.m. Election Day.
Because early voting was so heavy Saturday — the final day of in-person early voting — Miami-Dade’s elections office decided to open its headquarters’ doors in Doral on Sunday, beginning at 1 p.m. Voters in line before 5 p.m. got to cast their ballots.
“We saw the long lines [Saturday] and the need for so many people to vote and we asked ourselves: ‘What can we do?’ So we decided to open up today [Sunday] to allow people to vote absentee in person,” Miami-Dade’s elections office spokeswoman, Christina White, said Sunday.
Miami-Dade will allow in-person absentee voting on Monday as well. You can even do it on Election Day.
The long lines and big numbers of early and absentee votes are a boon to procrastinators.
Consider: Statewide, about 4.3 million ballots have been cast already — and that’s 36 percent of registered voters and about 48 percent of likely voters.
That means that, on Election Day, your precinct could be half-empty. And every precinct in the state will be open — more than 6,000, as opposed to the fewer than 300 super-precincts during early voting.
“Election Day should be pretty smooth,” said Chris Cate, spokesman for the state’s elections division.
Cate is probably right. Election Day should be a breeze.
But then, this is Florida. Not only are the elections laws confounding, the elections can be as well.