The Delaware County Times, PA
Nov. 3, 2004

Spencer: Some here are bushed after voting for Kerry

Gil Spencer, Times Columnist 11/03/2004

Mano's Gulf in Chester is pretty much an all-purpose service station.
You can get your brakes done, your emissions tested, your car
inspected, gas, air, food and drink.
And yesterday, for one day only, you could vote for president of the
United States.

All you had to do was slip past the counter, down a short hallway and
into the back room where you'll be greeted by a poster of Al Pacino as
Scarface.

Say `allo to ma `lil fren -- the voting booth.

Working the polls were Judge of Elections Pearl Burton, Republican
Vanessa Doward and Democrat Nancy Alexander.

As of 1 p.m. some 191 people out of approximately 1,800 registered
voters had cast their ballots.

"That's busy for this area," said Pearl, "and we have a long way to
go."

Out front, Bruce Mano was waiting on customers. I asked him if having
the polls there was good for business.

"It's a little disruptive," he said, "but what the heck. We've been
here 30 years so we do our part."

Shaheer Madeehah was handing out sample ballots at the door.

"A lot of people come up here and you don't know whether they're voting
or getting their car fixed," he said. But they figure it out.

I was there to do a little exit polling.

Sid Singletary, 72, said he was the second person in line at 7 a.m. He
was still there at 1 p.m. I asked him who he voted for.

"Democrat, 100 percent." I asked him why.

"To clean up the mess this president has made (in Iraq)," he said. "We
know he can't bring the soldiers home right now. The war has to be
finished one way or another."

Win or lose?

"I don't think I'm worried about losing it," he smiled. He said
electing Kerry could help encourage France and Germany to send troops
to help out.

Paul Buggs, 71, said he voted for Kerry, too.

"I would like to see him do something about medical for old folks and
something about Iraq. We're understaffed. We don't have enough soldiers
to do the job."

As for France and Germany, he said, "They had better sense than we did.
We got another Vietnam on our hands."

According to my exit poll numbers, John Kerry was safely ahead in
Chester when I left to go up the road to Wallingford.

At the St. John Chrysostom Elementary School, lines to vote were longer
than anyone could ever remember.

"Never in 21 years has there been a line like this," said Nirvana
Kacala. "My husband and I have been coming here for 21 years. You come,
you vote, you go." Not this year.

I asked 72-year-old Charlie Houck how he voted.

"Bush," he replied.

And what did he expect out of him for the next four years? "About the
same as we got now, God help us."

His number one voting issue was Iraq.

"Colin Powell was right. You go in there, you own it. So you gotta'
wipe `em out. Kill `em all but six. Use them as pallbearers."

He didn't sound too enthusiastic about the situation. I asked him, why
Bush?

"You think the other guy is going to do any better? ..he idea is to get
out of that mess with the least damage. (Bush) has a better handle on
it right now. Kerry don't know what's going on."

Victor Galla had a different take. He voted for Kerry hoping for "a lot
of change."

He would like the next administration to "bring democracy to other
countries without the use of troops. We should defend ourselves when
necessary but not be so aggressive about it."

Victor turned 33 yesterday. I turned 50 -- old enough to know better.

The most delightful person I talked to was Nirvana. She thinks George
Bush is "very outrageous and extreme." And "extreme situations," she
said, "need people like Nirvana to come out."

An Armenian Christian, she grew up in Lebanon (the country, not the
town). She came to America 28 years ago. Went to Penn. Got married and
raised two children. Her daughter went to Strath Haven High and then to
Swarthmore College. Nirvana rolled her eyes. She said something very
funny but made me promise not to print it. Then she got serious again.

Everyone in the world is mad at us, she said. None of her friends from
Europe or the Middle East will visit her.

"Nobody wants to come," Nirvana said. "They say get rid of Bush and
we'll come."

What if we don't?

"I will go into a serious depression," she said. "And get on Prozac.
For the next four years."

But there's good news for Nirvana. According to my exit polling data,
Kerry won Delaware County with 85.7 percent of the vote (margin of
error: plus or minus 45 percent).

Republicans should demand a recount.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress