Early voting is underway in Florida!

The following editorial was published in The Daily Sun on Oct 24, 2022.

OUR POSITION: An extended early voting period begins today.

If your mind is made up, and you want to avoid an election day crowd, early voting in DeSoto, Charlotte and Sarasota counties begins today.

The 2022 General Election is an important one. Floridians will select a governor between heavily favored incumbent Republican Ron DeSantis and Democrat Charlie Crist.

A U.S. Senate seat will be decided between Republican incumbent Marco Rubio and Democrat Val Demings. Republican Greg Steube will try to hold on to his District 17 seat in Congress representing an area that includes North Port and part of Charlotte County against Andrea Doria Kale, a North Port Democrat. There are several key local elections also with a Florida Senate seat up for grabs as Republican Sen. Ben Albritton, representing DeSoto and Charlotte counties, tries to fend off Democrat challenger Christopher Proia.

Early voting in Charlotte County runs from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. today through Nov. 7 — extended throughout Florida because of Hurricane Ian — at three locations. You can vote at the Charlotte County Administration Building, 18500 Murdock Circle, Port Charlotte; Historic Courthouse, 226 Taylor St. Punta Gorda (not on Nov. 8 however) or the Englewood Annex, 6868 San Casa Drive, Englewood.

Mail-in ballots in Charlotte County can be dropped off at any one of three Supervisor of Elections sites during office hours: Englewood Annex, 6868 San Casa Drive, Englewood, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. (except during an 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. lunch break); Charlotte County Historic Courthouse, 226 Taylor St., Punta Gorda, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. or Murdock Annex, Charlotte County Administration Building, 18500 Murdock Circle, Port Charlotte, Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. (except for lunch, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.).

Early voting in Sarasota County continues through Nov. 6, from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. daily at the following locations:

Sarasota Elections Office, Terrace Building, 2001 Adams Lane, Sarasota; Venice Elections Office, R.L. Anderson Admin Center, 4000 S Tamiami Trail, Rm 114, Venice; Fruitville Public Library, 100 Apex Road, Sarasota; The Devyn Event Center, 7113 South Tamiami Trail, Sarasota (replaces Sarasota Square Mall early voting site); North Sarasota Public Library, 2801 Newtown Blvd, Sarasota; Bee Ridge Park, 4430 S Lockwood Ridge Road, Sarasota; Venice Public Library, 300 Nokomis Ave. S, Venice.

North Port early voters can go to the North Port Elections Office, Biscayne Plaza, 13640 Tamiami Trail or Shannon Staub Public Library/Suncoast Technical College, 4675 Career Lane.

In DeSoto County you can cast an early ballot at the Supervisor of Elections Office, 201 E. Oak Street, Room 104, Arcadia from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. weekends. Early voting will run today through Nov. 5.

If you prefer to vote without leaving your home, the last day to request a mail-in ballot is Oct. 29. Editor: Visit https://www.soecharlottecountyfl.gov/Vote-by-Mail/VBM-REQ-Module or call 941-833-5400.

However or wherever you vote, please vote. It’s the best way to have a say in the future of your city, county, state and nation.

 Image Credits: Unsplash.com