Much prayer, patience may be needed at Sunday’s Soul to the Polls

Filed under DAYTONA STATE

BY JAMES HARPER
DAYTONA TIMES

Church members who plan to participate in Sunday’s “Souls to the Polls” march in Daytona Beach should be prepared to wait in a long line for hours.

Volusia County Supervisor of Elections Ann McFall says she will not be adding extra voting machines at the site to accommodate what is expected to be a record number of residents early voting in a single day at the site.

Journalist Roland Martin, best known as a commentator on CNN, recently talked to Bethune-Cookman students about the importance of voting during the annual Rock the Mic event at the university. (COURTESY OF B-CU)

“As long as they are in line, we will stay open and allow everybody to vote,” said McFall.

McFall also told the Daytona Times that the maximum number of people who will be able to vote at the site that day is 3,000.

The elections supervisor said the software isn’t set up to handle more than that number.

17 churches on board
Dr. L. Ronald Durham, pastor of Greater Friendship Missionary Baptist in Daytona Beach, said that so far the members of 17 churches will gather on the steps of the Courthouse Annex on Orange Avenue at 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 28 next to Jackie Robinson Ballpark. They then will march to City Island Library where early voting is taking place.

McFall said she is concerned about so many people going to vote at one time since early voting starts at 7 a.m.

“If you had the march all day long, thats one thing. A (late) march is going to have an impact,” said McFall.

She also noted that it is not the number of booths that will expedite residents voting faster.

DeLand, Deltona churches follow suit
Durham said the Get Out The Vote effort has now moved from just a local effort on the east side of Volusia to include several churches on the west side of the county as well.

Durham said pastors in DeLand and Deltona have begun to mobilize their churches to follow the lead of what is being done in Daytona.

“We are tremendously pleased with the responses from this major effort to highlight the importance of this election. We are facing some of the most difficult times in our cities and the nation as we have seen in the last decade. Without question this election will impact the lives of people for a generation, and it is therefore critical that everyone who can vote, should vote,” Durham said.

As far as people voting, Durham said, “We are hopeful that the staff of the Supervisor of Elections will honor all those who have a space in line before the 7 p.m. closing time and that each one will be allowed to cast their vote on Sunday.

We will provide water stations for those who need to have some kind of refreshment while standing in line waiting to vote,” he concluded.

B-CU students to march Oct. 29
Bethune-Cookman University students will have their separate march to the polls on Oct. 29.

Dr. Walter Fordham, a B-CU professor, told the Daytona Times that the Political Action Task Force, Associate Provost, select faculty and student leaders have organized a march starting from the university at 9:30 a.m. and ending at the City Island Library.

Fordham said the school has offered a variety of activities to register, educate, empower and prepare students to participate in this planned march to celebrate
“Your Vote Is Your Voice.’’ At B-CU voting is recognized as an integral part of becoming a productive member of this community and American society.  The march helps to demonstrate a commitment of students, faculty, staff and administrators at B-CU,” Fordham added.

EARLY VOTING HOURS AND SITES
Early voting is Saturday through Saturday, Oct. 27 through Nov. 3, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

DeLand
Department of Elections, Historic Courthouse, 125 W. New York Ave.

Deltona
Deltona Regional Library, 2150 Eustace Ave.

Daytona Beach
Volusia County Library Center at City Island, 105 E. Magnolia Ave.

Ormond Beach
Ormond Beach Regional Library, 30 S. Beach St.

New Smyrna Beach
New Smyrna Beach Regional Library, 1001 S. Dixie Freeway

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