The Voters Speak

CP reporters interviewed early voters around the metro area on Tuesday morning. Here’s what some of them had to say about what’s at stake.

Chris Hoefer, 29
Stockbroker
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Hall, Minneapolis

Everything is at stake: the war, the economy, civil rights. I think we're just fucked if Bush gets reelected. I travel abroad a lot, so I've heard the opinion about the U.S. in other parts of the world and right now there is a lot of disdain for us. In Spain, they were like, "Fuck you, American." If we reelect Bush, we are saying that we agree with this asshole we put in office and it will only make things worse. I really don't have any faith that this election is going to be conducted fairly. I don't think they are going to allow that.

DeAnna Smith, 27
Community organizer
Jordan New Life Community Church, Minneapolis

I voted for Kerry, because it's time for a change. It's more against Bush. Some people who support Kerry are African American. Will he do anything for us? We'll see. But it can't be worse for us than it's been. If Bush wins again, some of my friends say they'll move to Canada. But seriously, we better get ready, because then it's gonna get real crazy.

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PHOTO BY DIANA WATTERS
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PHOTO BY MIKE MOSEDALE

Darryl Sonenberg, 44
Software salesman
City Hall, Hilltop

What's at stake? The security of the nation and getting the nation back on track. I think Bush is the best for the job. If Kerry wins, there will be a lot of turmoil. I just don't think he has the intestinal fortitude to run the country. I don't think he could handle the pressure. I doubt we'll have any problems with the election here in Minnesota, but I hear that they still use those stupid punch cards in Ohio. Who knows what will happen? It's too close.

Nghi Huynh, 55
Newspaper editor, Asian American Press
Model Cities, St. Paul

I think it's important based on many issues. Number one is the war. We have to win the war. Because we have invested so much, millions of dollars already invested, and now we have to achieve the goal.... I think in any war we have to suffer a little bit in order to win. That's important. That's number one. And number two, for the morality of the society. The Supreme Court appointment is also very important. If the court is on the wrong side, then country's future is not very good.

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PHOTO BY BILL KELLEY
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PHOTO BY NICK VLCEK

Gandi Mohamed, 23
Transportation worker
Little Earth Neighborhood Early Learning Center, Minneapolis

I'm a little worried because of what happened in 2000. I didn't have any trouble voting today. I'm going to be a little pissed off if Kerry doesn't win, especially in Minnesota. Everywhere I go, I see Kerry signs, and everybody I talk to is voting for Kerry.

I don't approve of everything Kerry says, like some of the social issues. I am more conservative. The gay marriage, I don't believe in that. But the outcome of the war is more important. I wanted to go overseas after my active duty, maybe to work or even for an extended vacation. But you have trouble now--even the Europeans don't like us. When I went to Europe to visit in July, I didn't say I was an American to anybody. In 2000 I told people I was American and it helped me meet people; everybody was friendly toward me. Last time I was over there in Sweden and Finland, I saw people watching the news and some of them were cussing out the Americans. And you could see it right on their faces, the disappointment in America and what we were doing.

D'Andre Norman, 27
Warehouse coordinator
Jordan New Life Community Church, Minneapolis

I normally vote. What's got me concerned is the federal judges, the Supreme Court, the appellate judges. And then there's the war in Iraq and the economy. This is more of an anti-Bush vote. I don't see how anyone can be crazy enough to vote for him again, and I go issue to issue. Four years ago, okay, nobody knew him. But now we know.

I'm very worried about Ohio and Florida. They've allowed challengers there, and it's going to be up to them. There's a history of intimidating black voters, and that's not going to go away. I got a funny feeling about this because of the president's brother's state. I'm not so worried about the others. But that one? How come people don't see through that? And it's the same with Cheney getting Norm Coleman to run for Senate and Tim Pawlenty to run for governor. Get his puppy in there, you know. They've been using fear and religion to mess with people. I don't believe that shit has anything to do with government running the country.

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PHOTO BY DIANA WATTERS
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PHOTO BY DIANA WATTERS

Walter Young, 31
Unemployed
Lyndale Manor, Minneapolis

I was in Florida last time. We lived in Tallahassee and voted for Gore/ Lieberman. I remember watching Bush's anointment ceremony. We moved up here in January, and we were homeless. I'm a registered Democrat, but I had no address. I lived at Harbor Lights for a while. I have a Florida ID and a Social Security card. I don't have a utility bill to prove I live up here now. I was working at Wendy's, but that's on hold--I got hurt. Truth be told, I raised hell for about 10 minutes. I preregistered, so I was on the registration rolls. I told them they had to let me vote.

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