Voters hit polls to choose president, decide local races

By: Nick Mordowanec | Fraser - Clinton Township Chronicle | Published November 8, 2016

 From left, Karen Silverthorn, Ralph Debrabant and Josh Hicks wait for their opportunity to vote at Precinct 2 in Fraser City Hall.

From left, Karen Silverthorn, Ralph Debrabant and Josh Hicks wait for their opportunity to vote at Precinct 2 in Fraser City Hall.

Photo by Deb Jacques

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CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Voters filed in and out of Clintondale High School Nov. 8 to express their civic duties.

As one voter described, lines were basically nonexistent and “in and out” during a dreary — and somewhat rainy — morning. Clintondale represented precincts 3, 7 and 11.

The presidential race was accompanied by a plethora of local races, notably for supervisor, clerk, treasurer and trustees in the township. A Regional Transit Authority, or RTA, ballot initiative was also on the list.

But make no mistake: the battle between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was front and center.

Hasin Puric, a Bosnian refugee who has lived in Clinton Township the past 20 years, said he didn’t vote in 2012 because he knew who would become president. This time around he said it was too close to sit out.

“I voted for everything, but (the) national (race) is more important … I think for everybody,” Puric said. “The economy is not that bad, problem is the politics is so bad. I mean, it’s not perfect, but better than four years, six years ago, eight.”

Carl Adams said there’s been “a lot of chaos going on lately,” citing poor governance in Washington D.C. and even hoping for better policing in the area around Clintondale — where he is raising two children with his wife.

He is happy the national election is finally coming to an end.

“All the smearing on TV and I’ve got kids and they’re asking me questions,” Adams said. “I don’t know what to say. A lot of it is childish.”

At one point a man outside was sarcastically asking voters where he could vote against “Barack Hussein Obama, Michelle Obama and William Jefferson Clinton.” A woman, Pamela Lynn, told him it was illegal to harass voters.

“I voted because I’m terrified of Donald Trump,” said Lynn, a Clinton supporter. “I do always vote, but this time it’s even more important than normal. I was harassed on my way in.”

The man later left the building and yelled “death to Hillary” to nobody in particular.

Zenovia Davis said her primary goals were to vote for Clinton and for the RTA proposal.

“We need better transportation in the state alone, but this is a good start with the RTA,” Davis said, adding that young people as well as older adults would benefit. “Hopefully that will get passed and make things better overall.”

Voter Tim Janowicz said he didn’t focus on local races, since he doesn’t follow local government. He also hadn’t even heard about the RTA initiative until he read it on the ballot, and he voted for it.

“Not everybody has cars. The amount you can drive if you can reduce it is always good,” Janowicz said. “They mentioned higher speed buses and what not, so if you can leave your house and get somewhere relatively quickly without discomfort, that’s good for everybody.”

As for his presidential person of choice, he laughed and said, “It wasn’t Trump, that’s all I’ll say.”

Dwayne Nash also voted for Clinton and in favor of the RTA.

“I’ve been to other cities and I think that’s one of the major things the metropolitan area needs, personally,” Nash said. “I know a lot of people don’t like it, but we’re behind on that. I think we need to step forward.”

At around 11:45 a.m., one voter said about 700 votes had been submitted at that location. 

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