I got there at about 11:10 or so and it was a good time to go. The polling place people said there had been hour-long waits up until 11 AM. They felt it was more crowded than in 2000.
We vote using a computer card where we fill in circles with black magic marker. If you spoil your ballot, you have to get a new one. Once you're done, you take your ballot over to a second table where they get your name and then you feed it into a machine. This year, there were three pages to the ballot (the print is fairly large).
Massachusetts has four ballot initiatives and Boston has one, so there were five on the ballot, in both English and Spanish. If you want another language (I know there are people in our area who speak Portuguese, Arabic, and Thai), then you ask.
I was pleased to see folks of all ages and races at the polls today. No one was even handing out leaflets outside, although on the walk to the Y I spotted some lawn signs but they were for local elections like County Clerk.
The initiatives were:
- To add another place for slot machines and thereby expand gambling in the state. I voted no.
- To add more funding for charter schools, while potentially taking funding from public schools. I voted no.
- To require more humane caging conditions for food animals on farms. I voted yes.
- To legalize marijuana for people 21 and older under certain conditions. I voted yes.
- (Boston only) To set up a special fund for green spaces and historical buildings preservation. I voted yes.
I also brought my wallet with me, in case I needed to bribe an official
show my ID, but they didn't ask for ID, just for my name and address, which was checked off on a sheet when I got my ballot and then on an identical sheet when I handed my ballot in. Voting is held in the local YMCA and they hold a bake sale every year. This year, I bought 2 pieces of banana bread for a total of $2. RP's is waiting for him on the top shelf of the refrigerator, right hand side, next to the cilantro.