It was my privilege to be an official observer and project volunteer for one of the national campaigns. I consider myself an Independent voter, without party affiliation. This time around, I felt strongly enough to volunteer my time to one presidential candidate.
This experience was interesting in several ways. When I showed up at the polling center 15 minutes early, a line had already formed in the dark rainy parking lot. Wow! It was only 6:15 am!
The steady line continued throughout the morning. By the time I left at 1:00 pm, over 1800+ out of the 2600+ registered had voted (including the early voters). I got to witness several first time voters under 21 years old, and it brought to mind my first voting experience when I voted for Jimmy Carter (his first campaign) way back when. The next time, I was able to correct that vote by voting for Ronald Reagan:)
I also got to witness 4 individuals that were armed with newly minted US citizenship. My eyes teared up for them. One lady excitedly told the poll workers that she was a new citizen voting for the first time. I wish all of us would be so happy about it. One couple needed an interpreter and it was fortunate that our precinct had one present.
The value of our votes can never be overstated. The only thing more powerful, is the vote we cast with our pocketbooks. We remind ourselves that thanks to many that came before us, we have this privilege. When we hear the results, we can know that we have had a say in what we want our government to be. Afterward, MAYBE, we will be given a reprieve from campaigning for a few short months.