Early voters in Florida’s Miami-Dade County are angry.
The state’s Republican-led legislature has cut the number of early voting days by half, leading to long queues, closed offices and accusations of dirty tricks.
“I am a Florida resident,” said one woman,“I have been voting for 30 years now and the Republican governor has made it extremely difficult. It started with the election in 2000 when the vote was stolen and it’s just getting worse and worse.”
“Well, you know, there has been dirty politics on both sides as far as I can see,” one hopeful voter told Euronews,“And, you know, you get tired of it. I do. I got tired of it. Just talk about what you are going to do and stop the negative.”
“All you have to do is come and stand in line, pass your vote and elect who you want to elect.” said a third.“You know, I hope they count them this time.”
Some have had to wait for up to eight hours to cast their vote. The Florida Democratic Party has filed a lawsuit to keep some polling stations open.
The Euronews correspondent in Florida said;“Early voting is technically over in Florida, but electoral authorities have found creative ways to get around state-imposed restrictions. Despite that, just like in 2000, problems at the polls in this key battleground state threaten to take centre stage again in a US presidential election.”
Florida vote so close ‘the weather could decide it’
Euronews correspondent Paul Hackett has been following Mitt Romney during the Republican candidate’s last few days on the campaign trail. He reports from Tampa, Florida, another key battleground state.
“The Republican aides I’ve spoken to think that they can pull it off, they think they can win Florida. Really what it’s going to come down to is turnout and how many people they can actually get out (to vote) on the day. In Florida it’s a long and complicated process, it’s a long ballot and it makes it difficult for people to take time off work.
“Republicans generally come out, whatever the weather is; Democrats seem to tend to be fair weather voters. And with the weather forecast tomorrow… not very good… that could give it to Romney. If it rains, Democrats might not bother to come out and vote, and Republicans could take it simply if it’s a bad day weather-wise.
“The Republicans that I’ve spoken to said the first TV debate was a game-changer for them. Before they had a lacklustre campaign, a lot of people didn’t really know who Mitt Romney was. But he came across as a statesman for many Americans, and he stood up to the President… the sense that I get is that they saw him as more competent than the President.
“Whether that will be enough in a place like Florida is hard to tell. It’s divided demographically, you’ve got Hispanic voters, you’ve got a big Jewish community – they tend to vote Democrat. But who knows how this state will go, it really is neck and neck and very very tight. It’s very difficult to predict.”