Voters beat path to ballot box
|A national pastime
Tuesday brought a mid-term election, with voters heading to the polls across the country to cast ballots in federal, state and local races. Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Holmes Beach served as the polling place for Precinct 92.1. Citizens there voted for two city commissioners, as well as statewide officers, judges, a U.S. senator and a U.S. representative. Islander Photo: Lisa Neff
|Fran Barford campaigns for mayor in Anna Maria on election day. Barford and a number of supporters for the mayoral candidate and other politicians stood along Gulf Drive encouraging people to vote - and honk their car horns. Islander Photo: Lisa Neff
A steady stream of voters went to the polls on Anna Maria Island to
cast ballots in a mid-term election deciding the balance
of Congress and the makeup of city commissions.
ballot also contained statewide races, judicial contests, state legislative
seats and a number of initiatives and referendums, including a question
on raising impact fees for the West Manatee Fire Rescue District.
Many voters walked to the only
polling place in Anna Maria City, the city hall at
10005 Gulf Drive. Outside, voters mingled, casually talking about the
campaigns, the candidates and the weather - which
produced a short downpour around 3:45 p.m.
feet from the polling place, incumbent Anna Maria commission candidate Duke Miller
are going to vote right?" he
said to two women headed for city hall.
said, smiling and waving them on. "And thanks."
incumbent commission candidate Linda Cramer, wearing a "Got issues?" T-shirt,
chatted with a voter.
Gulf Drive, mayoral candidate Fran Barford and her supporters waved signs, encouraging
motorists to honk and passersby to vote. Supporters also turned out for Miller,
Cramer, commission candidate Jo Ann Mattick and mayoral candidate Tom Turner.
the south in Holmes Beach, at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, 6608 Marina Drive,
and St. Bernard Catholic Church, 248 S. Harbor Drive, many voters drove to the
polls, passing rows of colorful campaign signs before reaching "vote here" and
signs warning against campaigning within 100 feet of the polling place.
drizzle early Tuesday seemed not to deter voters. A downpour around 4 p.m. was
looks like a good showing," said
election deputy Bob Kral, stationed outside the polling place at St. Bernard
to assist voters. "A lot of people were here before 7 o'clock."
who had worked a dozen elections, guessed the turnout to be "less than
in the presidential, but better than usual."
"We always vote," said
Sheldon Hedges after casting his ballot at St. Bernard. The most interesting
races, to him, included the governor's race between Republican Charlie
Crist and Democrat Jim Davis and the five-way Holmes Beach contest for city commission.
voters complained about negative campaigning at the state and federal level and
said they went to the polls because they felt obliged, not inspired.