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Janet Zucker, Durham, North Carolina:

“We have 12 Obama to 1 McCain signs in the yards of our neighbors. Durham is definitely blue, but we can only hope that the tobacco farmers see the light too.  The Republicans are pulling out all the stops. Thank heavens the “godless ad” by Dole backfired and Hagan seems to be ahead, but you just never know…..what will happen when the Republicans are losing.   We got 10 phone messages from the Republicans over the weekend and they weren’t pretty.

“Polls open at 6:30 am and I was there at 6:35 am (light to medium rain). We have a paper ballot in NC with bubbles to mark with a pen.The president is voted for separately and you can then vote a straight Democratic/Republican/Libertarian ticket, then separately for the local elections. As I waited for my husband to vote, I observed one young couple high-5ing each other after they had voted….I liked that.  I really thought that there would be long lines, but I asked one of the officials, and she said that 50% of our precinct had voted early.”

Bev Bishop, Saint Louis, Missouri:

“I voted [early] with my sister. We waited outside (it was a frost freeze that night) for about 45 minutes before getting inside. We arrived at 7:30am. It was chilly! The few women (black) in front of us were about our age. The gentlemen behind us (black) were just a bit younger.  Well, they let a whole group in and we were sure we would all get in next.  As a few voters came out the woman in front said she would go get her friend in the car.  A few minutes later we saw this very, very old black woman, long grey coat buttoned at the top, a hat and Sunday shoes, slowly, bent over, face very determined and focused, inching toward us with her friend, carrying a chair. We all couldn’t help fast enough and looking at each other, had tears in our eyes. Nothing had to be said. I turned to the man behind me and he quietly said . . . “not in her lifetime could she have dreamt this opportunity would ever come.”
Peter Miner, Washington Heights, New York City:
“The students will not attend school Tuesday, so Monday was my last chance to try to help them appreciate how truly historic this election is. We watched a wonderful film created by the Southern Poverty Law Center about the Civil Rights Struggles of the 50’s and 60’s, and we talked about ghosts. My students know that I don’t believe in ghosts, but I’ll be gratefully voting on their behalf tomorrow, hoping they do exist and are somehow able to feel triumphant. Some have distinguished names like Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Frederick Douglass, Nat Turner, Ida B. Wells, Emmett Till, Rosa Parks, Medgar Evers, and Martin Luther King. Most are unknown to me, but tomorrow’s election belongs more to them than it belongs to me…
“It’s 6:45 am. I have voted and am feeling quite satisfied.”
Mary Michele Miner, Pasadena, California: 
“I’m up and getting ready to go to my poll which opens at 7.  I expect a line.  Justine is going with me as I want her to mark in Obama’s name–so she can tell her grandchildren she voted for Obama. Paul’s doing the same with Jake later.  Then Justine and I are going over to a well trafficked intersection to meet Paul and Jake and, hopefully, many others to raise signs promoting  Measure TT, our school bond issue. Then I head off to work [stage manager] and am desperate to figure out how to watch election returns in my booth sans laptop.  It’s killing me. I’m taking a small TV and a radio to the theatre but lots of concrete and reception isn’t promising. Have no idea about the house tonight.  My guess is it’ll be small. I just don’t understand anyone who doesn’t want to be glued to the TV tonight.”