I Voted Early in Florida and It Was Easy

I voted last Thursday. It was easy. I had to go pick up my daughter from daycare, and an early voting location happened to be right on the way. I left half an hour early just in case, and then drove the 1.1 miles to the Murray Hill Library. I returned three audio books (I know you’re dying to know: Don DeLillo’s The Body Artist, Margaret Atwood’s Moral Disorder, and Michael Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay) and then stood in a line five-people deep where I waited all of 120 seconds before entering the voting area. There, I handed over my driver license and voter registration card, confirmed my address, and waited about 45 seconds for my ballot. The woman in front of me was living at an address different from the one on her ID, but she was able to vote anyway. Easy. I overheard the process involved (she had to fill out some form) while I waited about a minute to go to a booth. Then I went to the booth and voted for Obama (I didn’t even look wistfully at Nader’s name, I swear!). I voted on some other stuff too, but the only other thing I cared about quite a bit was Florida’s proposed Amendment 2, another American Taliban scheme to define marriage. I voted “no,” of course. The whole process, including driving, took less than 20 minutes (I should mention that I had my sample ballot with me, which is a time saver of course).

Some folks I know personally have worried about early voting–will their vote be counted?–and after debacles in 2000 and 2004, who can blame them for these anxieties? However, Florida voters can go to the Florida Division of Elections website to check the early voting and absentee ballot reports. I went there, clicked on my county’s updated report, downloaded a .txt file and found my name, as well as my wife’s, and the respective times we voted. Done. I know–and have a record–that my vote will be counted. Simple. Now, go vote–you never know what surprise might pop up on November 4th.