Today is Election Day here in the US and altho many States have allowed their citizens the ability to vote early, the first Tuesday in November of a Presidential Election Year is the official Election Day. At 12AM ET, the small hamlet of Dixville Notch, New Hampshire was the “first in the nation” to open their polls and allow their citizens to vote. Because of the small number of voters there, the results were made known mere moments after the voting opened. Altho Dixville Notch is traditionally heavily Repbulican the Democratic nominee, Senator Barack Obama, won by a landslide … at least by Dixville Notch standards:
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama emerged victorious in the first election returns of the 2008 presidential race, winning 15 of 21 votes cast in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire. People in the village in New Hampshire’s northeast corner voted just after midnight Tuesday. It was the first time since 1968 that the village leaned Democratic in an election. Obama’s rival, Republican John McCain, won 6 votes. A full 100 percent of registered voters in the village cast ballots. And the votes didn’t take long to tally. The town, home to around 75 residents, has opened its polls shortly after midnight each Election Day since 1960, drawing national media attention for being the first place in the country to make its presidential preferences known … The result in Dixville Notch is hardly a reliable bellwether for the eventual winner of the White House — or even the result statewide. While New Hampshire is a perennial swing state, with 4 Electoral College votes at stake, Dixville Notch consistently leans Republican. The last Democrat it picked was Hubert Humphrey over Richard Nixon in 1968.
I am so impressed that this small section of the State of New Hampshire takes such pride in voting. They are a true testament to the spirit of the electoral process here in the US. If only the rest of the country would follow suit.
That said, I think this year’s election will prove that more people (possibly than ever, surely than the last few elections) are interested in participating in the electoral process by casting their votes. Already we’ve heard of people waiting up to 10 hours in line to cast their early votes in this election. As a student of Political Science, it’s is a great treat for me to watch the way this election has unfolded over the past (almost) 2 years. While I would never tell anyone how to vote, I feel it incumbent to express who I am supporting in this presidential election because of the historical implications — whoever wins — of this year’s election. Anyone familiar with my site must know by now that I am proudly casting my vote for Senator Barack Obama:
I have been a life-long Democrat ever since turning 18 years old and learning what each of the major Political Parties stand for. I find that my social beliefs fall in line with the Party Platform of the Democratic Party and am happy to cast my vote in that manner. But this year is different … this year, the Dems have nominated a man who sparks such enthusiasm in me, such an exciting feeling of inclusion and hope that, indeed, it is the man himself who has won my vote, not just his Political Party. We Americans enjoy such a privilege to vote in this country that it is criminal to take that right for granted. But I can understand the feeling some voters have to either vote against someone or to not care at all. So many folks have been disenfranchised for so many years, as sad as it is to say … I can absolutely understand why some people do not feel they can be a part of the political process. Senator Barack Obama is a man to believe in — to want to vote for. It’s not a matter of voting against his opponent, it’s a matter of voting for this man who I honestly believe will lead our country into a hopeful and prosperous future. I am wholly confident that Barack Obama will be the President that our country desperately needs right now. Since the first time I heard it, I vividly recall a particular line from Michelle Obama‘s keynote speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, CO this past Summer. Michelle urged voters to “vote their hopes, not their fears” and I can’t think of a more appropriate way to explain why I am choosing to vote Barack Obama for President of the United States of America.
Again, I am not telling anyone how to vote, nor am I trying to convince anyone that they should vote my way … I am merely so excited to get to my polling place and wait however long it will take to get my turn and cast my ballot for Barack Obama. I cannot express my excitement over this election. The winds of change are blowing and the US is on the verge of a new future. It’s an exciting time to be an American. We are so close to so much hopeful promise … the feeling is electric. I urge all Americans to get out and VOTE. Have your say, be a part of history and do your civic duty. As citizens, you owe it to your country … but, perhaps more importantly, you owe it to yourselves.
Please, if you have the time and inclination, send me a photo of yourself, family members and/or friends proudly wearing your I Voted stickers and I will happily post them on the site this week. Email your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org AND VOTE, Y’ALL!!!!!!!