Early voting returns to Modesto Maidique Campus

Participants march outside the FIU Graham Center calling passersby to go vote. (Photo by Katherine De Jesus)

By: Anna Radinsky/Assistant News Director

 

The Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections selected the Modesto Maidique Campus to be an early voting site in the 2018 Midterm Elections.

Early voting is available in the Student Academic Success Building (SASC) next to the Gold Garage.

                                                                                                                                          Front entrance to SASC

The University has been an early voting site in previous elections, but 2018 is the first year where it will have a polling site closer to more foot traffic.

Before the Florida Secretary of State, Ken Detzner, banned university and college campuses from being polling areas in 2014 the University had a site in its football stadium.

The closest early voting site to MMC in 2016 was the West Dade Regional Library- two miles away from the campus.

The League of Women Voters and college students in Florida were included in presenting a legal challenge to Detzner in May 2018 to have university and college campuses be voting sites.

U.S. District Judge, Mark Walker, reversed the ban in July 2018, saying that it was unconstitutional.

After the ban was lifted, election supervisors in Florida’s counties were given the power to place early voting sites on college and university campuses.

The Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections, Christina White, announced early voting sites in September, but the University and Miami Dade College campuses were not on the list.

After pressures from student activists and organizations in both colleges, early voting sites were made on the MMC campus and on two of the MDC campuses.

 

 (Photo by Katherine De Jesus)

For the over 53 thousand non-fully online students in the University, having an early voting site on campus allows for greater accessibility to vote.

“Providing early voting on campus was the smartest way to make early voting available to students and faculty on campus without having the additional transportation challenge,” said Dan Horton, the Florida state director for All Voting is Local.

Members around the University community can vote for two weeks from Monday, Oct. 22, to Sunday, Nov. 4 between the hours of 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Student Academic Success Center.

Those who cannot vote at the polls can also vote by mail.

The last day to request a vote-by-mail ballot is by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 31, and the last day to send in a vote-by-mail ballot is by 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 6.

The 2018 General Elections in Miami-Dade include the official general election ballot, 12 state constitutional revisions, and five county referendums.

Because the voting ballot will be long, voting early will allow voters to avoid the long waiting times that are expected on Election Day, said Marisol Zenteno, the president of Miami-Dade County’s League of Women Voters, in a presentation on Diversity Day on Thursday, Oct. 11.

Voting on the day of the Midterm Election- Tuesday, Nov. 6- requires voters to go to their assigned voting locations, but registered voters can go to any of the 28 early voting locations in Miami-Dade, including the University.

The University’s Center for Leadership and Service will be offering Biscayne Bay Campus students transportation for early voting at MMC or in Broward County in Hallandale Beach on Tuesday, Oct. 23, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

CLS will also be hosting the League of Women Voters of Miami-Dade for an information session about the ballot on Thursday, Oct. 25, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Graham Center in room 140.

Students can sign up and find more information from the Center for Leadership and Service or the Student Government Council at the Biscayne Bay Campus.

To get more information about early voting or Election Day in Miami-Dade county, visit miamidade.gov/elections/ or call 311.

Below is a map of all of the voting sites in Miami-Dade and Broward County. Click the icon on the top left to search for specific sites in each county:

 

Map by Michelle Marchante/Editor in Chief

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