By Karli Barnett

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FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Election Day is officially underway across South Florida.

Volunteers and poll workers arrived at the Coral Ridge Mall in Fort Lauderdale around 5:30 a.m. to begin setting up for the day.

Carolyn Siegelman is a volunteer who was out setting up signs early before the lines formed. She said she’s been busy and anticipates the same crowds today.

“I expect to see more long lines and more record-breaking numbers,” she said.

Many people who arrived when the polls opened at 7 a.m. said they prefer to wait for Election Day to vote because it was somewhat of a tradition.

“It’s what I fought for. I’m sorry,” said a veteran overcome with emotion after he finished voting.

A reminder of the great power people have with a ballot in their hand.

“Don’t take that for granted because we actually do have some power over what goes on in our country today,” said Lauren Rocco.

“No right is stronger than this right to vote. I’m very proud to be American. Very proud to vote,” said Ellen Peel.

Over at the Hollywood Beach Bernice P. Oster Library, political signs dotted the way. People described a pain-free process as well.

But even though the lines were short, “The ballot was long. But there were no surprises for me,” said a voter.

At the Broward Emergency Operations Center in Plantation, election department workers did their best to ensure there were no issues like computer glitches or printer problems even with the influx of voters.

“Since I’ve been here almost 15 years, we’ve never seen this kind of enthusiasm and energy and interest and folks who are already motivated. We don’t have to go out there and say: vote vote vote,” said Broward Supervisor of Elections Dr. Brenda Snipes early Tuesday morning.

Later in the day, Snipes has yet to comment on a situation getting a few complaints in Deerfield Beach.

A precinct, formerly located at a public community center, was moved to a building inside a private gated community at Le Club Century Village.

Security guards at the gate required ID to get into the complex, which some voters didn’t like.


The polls are open until 7 p.m. Bring ID with a name and signature, such as your driver’s license or passport.

This story was reported with a tip from ProPublica’s Electionland project, which monitors voting problems around the country. Tell us if you’ve had a problem voting here.

Remember, the midterm election ballot is lengthy. If you haven’t done so already, and plan to vote, you may want to take a look at it before you head to your polling station.

Sign up here to report any voting issues you’ve experienced.

Karli Barnett