Huffpost Miami

Miami Votes On Election Day: LIVE UPDATES (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

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Miami-Dade County may have added 809 polling places to its 20 highly congested early voting locations, but it didn't solve the hours-long lines that made headlines over the weekend.

As polls began closing Tuesday night, several were facing the prospect of serving lines of voters into what could be the wee hours of Wednesday. Precincts in Hialeah and Kendall ballooned with waits of 5 hours or more, and in Brickell polls at the UTD Towers were bogged down with nearly 7-hour lines -- with hundreds of voters still waiting to cast votes hours after cutoff.

Get live updates from Election Day in Miami-Dade below:

Miami Votes!
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Technically this liveblog ended yesterday, but we think it deserves one last item: this tweet, from Florida Secretary of State spokesman Chris Cate, which should indicate just how heroic Miamians were last night in their determination to be counted. Incredible challenge, incredible response.

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Ohio toppled America for Barack Obama -- even as Miami-Dade residents were still voting. Thanks for following our liveblog, Miami! We'll have more from local races Wednesday morning.

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@ doug_hanks : Right now official Fla. margin of about 36,000 votes would be enough for an automatic recount (half a percentage point margin), lawyers say

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Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Penelope Townsley has said there will not be a final tally for the county until Wednesday, with approximately 300 people still in line to vote at 11 p.m. Tuesday night.

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Katherine Culliton-González, senior attorney and director of voter protection for the Advancement Project, a civil rights group, reported to HuffPost problems in two precincts. She said that she had to return to one North Miami precinct three times to assist poll workers.

In one instance, elderly residents and residents with literacy issues had sought out help from Advancement Project staff. Poll watchers intervened and tried to prevent them from assisting these voters, Culliton-González said.

The same precinct also did not have a bilingual poll worker. An election protection worker was asked to help translate. That worker was promptly kicked out of the precinct. After much back and forth, she was allowed back in," she said. But then was evicted a second time. The polling staff eventually allowed her back in.

The protection worker, Betsy Aguirre, said that she had tried to help a Spanish-speaking voter and another who had trouble reading the ballot before getting evicted. She said that in the morning, the precinct claimed they did not have any sample ballots that could have assisted voters. Hours later, the samples were discovered.

In another precinct, Culliton-González said a GOP lawyer managed to get inside the voting area. "The voters and the poll workers were all people of color," she explained. "She bullied her way in." The lawyer was eventually kicked out.

All the voters stuck it out and voted, she believes. "Luckily the voters were not intimidated," she said. "We didn't have anyone leave. Election protections were there."

--Jason Cherkis

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miami after dark

Voters line up in the dark to beat the 7:00 p.m. deadline to cast their ballots at a polling station, Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012 in Miami. Florida voters queued up before dawn Tuesday to cast their ballots as long lines began forming at some precincts across the state. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

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A ballot measure in Florida that would have erased women's right to reproductive "privacy" from the state constitution was defeated on Tuesday by a margin of 56 to 44 percent, according to CNN. The measure, put on the ballot by Republican state legislators, would have empowered the state to enforce abortion restrictions, such as mandatory ultrasound laws, and would have enabled state lawmakers to ban abortion altogether if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

“We commend the voters of Florida for joining what has become a national movement to wholly reject these attacks on reproductive freedom and to demand stronger protections for reproductive rights,” Nancy Northup, president and CEO at the Center for Reproductive Rights, said in a statement. “By preserving women’s reproductive rights under the Florida state constitution, women and families will continue to have all options available to them so they can make the best health care decisions for their circumstances."

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A glimpse of today's latest Debacle in Dade: lines of 5 and 6-hour waits. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of voters still remain in line to cast ballots -- hours after polls began closing.

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meanwhile the u on abc

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Miamians may be forced to wait in hours-long lines all the time, but they won't ever go without Cuban coffee. Service continued late Tuesday evening as 200 people still in line in Sweetwater were served a pizza dinner with cafecitos.


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@ RoblesHerald : Elections department reported 800 people in line in South Kendall #HeraldVote

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@ PatriciaMazzei : At least 300 people in line at Goulds Church of Christ in South Miami-Dade. People bringing coffee, water to voters waiting. #heraldvote

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With more results flooding in, it isn't looking good for embattle U.S. Rep. David Rivera (R), who's losing now to Democratic challenger Joe Garcia 43-53 percent.

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With less than 1 percent reporting, Barack Obama leads in Florida 50.2 percent - 49.1 percent. Keep an eye on things with our fabulous map!

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Ready for the first numbers of the night in Miami-Dade? Here they come! A count of only previously-received absentee ballots shows Barack Obama with a 382 vote advantage over Mitt Romney:

Romney 96,910 (49.66%)

Obama 97,292 (49.86%)

Mack 85,368 (45.85%)

Nelson 98,183 (52.73%)

Interestingly, results also show embattled U.S. Rep. David Rivera (R) with a 52-44 lead over challenger Joe Garcia (D). Get full early absentee results here:

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@ WPTV : CNN reports, FL early exit polls show Latino voters make up 16% of electorate, up from 14% in 2008.

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miami votes

Matt Novick, of Southwest Ranches, comes prepared to wait in line with his own chair because of severe back problems, Tuesday, November 6, 2012, at the Southwest Regional Library in Pembroke Pines, Florida. (Joe Rimkus Jr./Miami Herald/MCT via Getty Images)

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@ terrymurphy06 : @DeFede young couple with two kids just walked away from Miami Lakes precinct upon hearing 2.5 hours to vote.

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@ DeFede : Just interviewed President Obama. He wouldn't predict a Florida win but said: "I think it is going to be incredibly close." #cbs4votes

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voting line south miami

"Voting at my old high school..." South Miami Senior High, South Miami

Photo credit: Ana Rusch

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Voting in Florida hasn't been easy -- again -- but there'll be no mascara'd face behind a podium if things go south. Florida's current Secretary of State is former beer lobbyist Ken Detzner, whom the Miami Herald reports has a more "muted" demeanor:

“We’re not going to have a Katherine Harris problem,” says Guy Spearman, a lobbyist and longtime friend of Detzner.

“Unlike Katherine, who was arrogant, he’s exceedingly politically astute from having worked in Tallahassee so long,” Spearman said. “We’re hearing all the time that it’s us and Ohio who will decide this, us and Ohio, so there’s no doubt, Ken’s got a tough job ahead of him. But he’s up to it.”

But voter rights groups have already clashed with Detzner, who was appointed to his 0,000-a-year post by Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) -- a man who knows a little about trying to pare down votes in the Sunshine State. Read more at the Herald.

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@ MarcACaputo : UTD Towers on Brickell in downtown Miami: 6.5-hour for some. This was one of the last precincts to close in FL in 08. What did we learn?

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Boca News Now reports:

A woman attempting to vote in West Boca Raton this morning was initially prohibited from entering the polling place because she was wearing a tee shirt with the letters MIT. has heard from multiple sources that an election supervisor at the polling place ultimately realized that MIT stands for “Massachusetts Institute of Technology” — a school where students tend to know how to spell — and was not a campaign shirt for the Republican candidate, who spells his name MITT.


The woman was ultimately allowed to vote.

Read more here.

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