MIAMI (CBSMiami) – As early voting comes to a close there have been a lot of people taking advantage of casting their ballots before November 4th.
Voters left the polls proud to have participated in their patriotic duty.
“I’m very proud that I’m able to vote in a free country,” said Jorge de Diego.
“It’s my civic duty,” said Ray Callahan. “It’s not an option, I have to do this.”
Hundreds of thousands of people across South Florida cast their ballots early.
Some wanted to avoid Election Day lines while others knew they wouldn’t get the chance to make it to the polls on Tuesday.
“I’ll be working so I just didn’t want to risk not coming to vote,” said Marilyn Ioddi. “So I figured just do it now and I’m glad I did.”
“This is the greatest day to vote because it is a beautiful day,” explained Arthur Cohen. “There are not lines, you get it done and you don’t have to worry about it on Tuesday.”
Pre-election voters have wasted no time casting their ballots.
With no long lines, most said they were in and out within fifteen minutes.
“It was a lot faster this time,” said Louis Otegui. “Last time I was here for almost a day with my dad and he’s 80 so it’s a lot better for him.”
According to election officials, early voter turnover this time around has increased in both Miami-Dade and Broward Counties compared to 2010.
Many voters say the closely contested governor’s race drove them to the polls.
The medical marijuana initiative is another hot button issue.
Regardless of what side of the issue you’re on, voters said you lose your right to complain about the outcome if you don’t exercise your right to vote.
“I hope my vote makes a change,” said de Diego.
As of Sunday evening, 16,486 voters participated in early voting for the day and 116,905 voted during the early voting time period in Miami-Dade County.
In Broward County, the latest numbers showed 19,802 people voted Sunday and 129,073 people voted during the early voting time period.
If you don’t get a chance to vote early you can still cast your ballot on Election Day.
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