Los Angeles Collegian Online

Residents Cast Ballots on Campus for Peace of Mind

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 East Hollywood residents found few lines at L.A. City College on Nov. 3 at the vote center. 

JUAN MENDOZA
Thousands of people pour into the streets of Downtown Los Angeles on Election Day in and around Pershing Square on Nov. 3, 2020. They form a sea of masks, signs and flags, as they celebrate the victory of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice-president elect Kamala Harris.

 (LOS ANGELES, Calif./Nov. 3/By Juan Mendoza) — Officials unlocked the doors exactly at 7 a.m. on Tuesday where a couple of people were waiting outside for a few minutes before the doors opened at the L.A. City College Vote Center. 

There was a chill in the morning air, and the early voters appeared excited because finally, the day had come. They were looking forward to the opportunity to exercise their right to vote. 

The current toxic political environment caused these early morning voters to doubt the mail-in ballot choice.

“This is my first time to vote, and I just got my citizenship this year,” said John Cardona a new immigrant from the Philippines. “I’m really excited to practice my right as an American citizen. I care about job security, and to end poverty. And after the election I would like to see more unity between people.” 

Voters would come and go all day at the Vote Center which was located in the Student Union Building. There was no waiting, no lines, no protestors nor anyone to harass voters. Everything moved in the right direction throughout the day. 

It was a different scene just a few months earlier at the election primaries in March. Voters waited in line for a least 20 to 30 minutes to cast their ballot.

Not that long ago, voters were tied to a specific polling place according to their address. Because of The California Voter’s Choice Act that passed in 2016 voters can cast their ballot anywhere in L.A. County.

“We have no lines and people are not waiting because the majority of voters sent their ballot by mail or voted early,” said a poll worker who did not want to be identified.

More than 100 million votes had already been cast by Nov. 3, according to the Washington Post. 

Election Day generated fear among some City College students like Daryl Jim Diaz who is working on a certificate in Elementary/Intermediate Japanese. He believes L.A. County wanted to protect the integrity of the election and didn’t want votes to be tampered with. 

“I’m nervous about election day,” Diaz said. “I am nervous that our current president will find a way to cheat the system. We know politics can be corrupt. He doesn’t want to give out a second stimulus check to the American people unless he is president again … That says a lot.”

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