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Voters try to focus on policies, not candidate personas this election

By Rashika Jaipuriar, BDJ 364.01

Published on November 8, 2016

Voting polls in Pompey, N.Y. are up and running for business. (c) 2016 Rashika Jaipuriar

Voters say candidate policies are critical in elections.

POMPEY, N.Y. (Democracy in Action) — Despite the novelty of this year’s presidential election, voters in upstate New York are finding a way to tune out the political “noise” and listen to their hearts.

Mary Anne Silvernail, a high school teacher from Manlius, said although there was a lot of focus on candidate personalities, it comes down to their ideas and policies.

“It’s always about policy; it’s always about what’s right for America, what direction we should be going into,” Silvernail said. “I think there was a lot of noise about character traits and scandals but elections are always about policy.”

Local citizens performed their civic duty on Election Day. (c) 2016 Rashika Jaipuriar

Local citizens performed their civic duty on Election Day. (c) 2016 Rashika Jaipuriar

Stephen Lindenmayer, a commercial electrician living in Pompey, also said elections should be more policy focused. The 63-year-old said he’s been voting since he was 18 as a civic duty — but he’s always voted for politicians.

“Right now, the candidates that are in there have been dishonest as far as the democratic party goes,” Lindenmayer said. “There’s too much hanky-panky going around. I wouldn’t mind seeing a business man in there for once even if he doesn’t do well after four years, go back to the politicians. But I’ve been voting for politicians my whole life, and this is where it’s gotten us.”

With the charged rhetoric surrounding this election season, whether it was Clinton’s emails or Trump’s wall, there were some concerns nationally over voter intimidation and poll monitoring. Elizabeth Mahon, a system specialist at the Pompey Town Hall polling booth, however said she wasn’t nervous about election day.

Voters beat the sunrise this morning at Pompey Town Hall. (c) 2016 Rashika Jaipuriar

Voters beat the sunrise this morning at Pompey Town Hall. (c) 2016 Rashika Jaipuriar

I was excited,” Mahon said. “To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect because I worked the last presidential (election) and it was really crazy, but that was four years ago. So this one I wasn’t sure, but we have been busier than I’ll get out.”

There was a line of voters as early as 6:20, according to Mahon. And although there’s only one voting machine at Pompey Town Hall, she said poll workers are hard at work to get people in and out quickly.

 

Here’s a handful of voter voices from the Pompey Town Hall Polling Place: