Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Election Day

The day has finally arrived. The Iowa caucuses seem such a long time ago - and the long run up to them as various Republicans positioned themselves to take on President Obama. In fact it seems that this election has been running for the last four years. But finally election day 2012 is here.

Yesterday saw a remarkable operation run from our office. Voters were contacted on the phone or in person on their doorsteps. They were reminded of their polling station and the new requirements for voter ID. Volunteers sat in every available chair using landlines, campaign supplied mobiles and their own "cellphones". When there were no seats left, people sat on the floor. Canvassers were dispatched to a number of centres around the Fairfax county area. From high school students (yesterday was a school holiday) to retirees, volunteers flooded in and were set to work.

As I write this in bed (it's not yet 04-30), work is underway in Huntington and hundreds of offices around the country to get today's operation underway. Polls open at 6-00 in Virginia. They will close at 7pm. Then afterwards the results will be awaited. Unlike in the UK, there is no central place where candidates of all parties and their supporters attend 'the count'. Instead results are phoned in from each of the counts at every polling station. The candidates will be based at their own Headquarters. Many of my colleagues who have been working on the Tim Kaine campaign will be heading down to Richmond, where the Democratic senatorial candidate will await the result along with his supporters. I'll remain in North Virginia to follow the national, state and local results. It's going a long day and night - and I'll be getting up in just 15 minutes! At five....

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