Man passes out at polling place in Sun City Palm Desert

A man passed out at the Sun City Palm Desert polling place Tuesday morning after working out nearby. (Denise Goolsby, The Desert Sun)

A man passed out at the Sun City Palm Desert polling place Tuesday morning after working out nearby. (Denise Goolsby, The Desert Sun)

A man who passed out at the Sun City Palm Desert polling place Tuesday morning will be taken to a hospital as a precaution, said Allied Barton Security Services supervisor Raul Avitia.

But the man likely wasn’t feeling faint because of Tuesday’s election.

He was working out at the fitness center before he stopped by the polling place, felt a little dizzy, stumbled and fell on his rear end, Avitia said.

Diana Miller casts vote for Barack Obama

Diana Miller is voting for Barack Obama, “Because he represents women very well. He will secure Medicare into the future and good health for all Americans.”

Although the 2008 election was “more exciting,” this year’s carries just as much importance.

“We can hope for more cooperation,” she said.

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Voter opines on 28, 29, Palin, McCain, and Obama

Danny Moss plopped himself down at one of the chairs across from me and started rifling thought the pages of the voter’s guide.

“I gotta vote, but I don’t know what I’m voting for,” he said. “The most important are props 28 and 29,” he said, apparently to no one in particular, but I was immediately interested.

“It doesn’t matter what hack you vote for, they’re all the same,” he said. “Whoever’s in office, I just vote ‘em out.”

Moss was wearing a faded lime green T-shirt, jean shorts, and was sporting some blue and white checkered slip-on Vans tennis shoes. He was quite a character … and very entertaining.

“OK, yes on 28,” he said, after giving the for and against arguments a quick read. “I don’t smoke so it don’t matter on 29.” He said he’ll vote yes on 29, but wonders where all of the money is going to go.

“What are they going to do with it? Use it for research or do something for immigrants?”

As for the presidential race, he said he won’t cast his vote for Obama.

“I voted for him because I didn’t like Palin,” he said. He questioned her intelligence – actually he said something a little stronger, but we’ll leave it at that – but he really liked John McCain and would have voted for him if Palin wasn’t on the ticket.

“Today, I cannot vote for him again. He says what he has to say, then listens to big business.”

“When I grew up, people did what was right. Now they do what big business wants. None of these guys has a set of balls.”

President Obama did do one thing right, he said.

“Going after the Taliban, and pulling the trigger on Osama bin Laden.”

Two “Yes” votes for Prop. 29

It’s picking up a little bit out here at the Sun City Palm Desert polling place, but it’s still pretty slow-going.

Don Boswell, clad in a bright red polo shirt with an “I Voted” sticker pressed onto the left chest of his shirt, was waiting patiently while Judy Heine finished up in the voting booth.

Foolishly, I asked if Judy was his wife – I should know better by now not to assume anything about seniors – and he smiled and said, “We’re Domestic Partners of the opposite sex, as opposed to the regular kind. We’re defrauding the government,” he said playfully.

As  to what brought them out to vote today, he said, “We wanted to vote yes on (Prop.) 29, mainly to stop smoking; making it expensive enough that people will quit.”

On the presedential election: “I think it’s going to be close. I think Obama will be re-elected. He’s having a bad patch now, but I’ll think he’ll win. And I say that as a Republican.”

Why so sure?

“Because Obama will get positive press. No offense,” he said while smiling and nudging my arm.

Voting: Some more open about choices than others

While some people are quite open about who and what they’re voting for – or against – others are more private about their choices.

Ina Gibbons walked into the polling place at Sun City Palm Desert with her vote by mail ballot in hand. She didn’t want to hand it to a precinct worker. She told him she wanted to slip it into the box herself. He obliged.

When asked what was most important to her on this ballot, she quickly responded, “The propositions,” but declined to elaborate or say which way she voted.

I had to at least ask, right?

Larry Toms came out to the polling place at Sun City Palm Desert’s main clubhouse about an hour before a community association meeting that was going to be held in a room right across the hall. He said he arrived early because he thought the lines were going to be longer. At about 9:15 a.m, Larry and I were both headed over to a glass table with four chairs sitting out in the hall area. We both stopped for a moment to allow the other one to use the table. I asked if he didn’t mind sharing, and we both pulled out our iPads and began tapping away at the keyboards.

I asked what brought him out to vote today, and he said, “I’m an American and it’s an election and I want my opinion to be counted,” on issues that were important to him. “Mainly the propositions.”

When I asked what he thought about the presidential election in November, he didn’t divulge his pick, but said, “It’s very important for this country.”

A vote for Bono Mack

Don and Bonnie Traylor arrived at the Sun City Palm Desert polling place around 9 a.m. The Traylor’s – they both volunteer at the Palm Springs Air Museum – were about to head through the entrance when I pounced. It’s always nice to see familiar faces because if they try to dodge me, I know where to find them.

“Why are you here?” I asked.

“Because it’s important to vote,” Don said. “We don’t have a dog in this fight,” “But we’re here to support certain people,” Bonnie said, finishing his sentence.

Anyone in particular?

“Can we plug someone?” Bonnie asked.

“Sure!” I said.

“Mary Bono Mack,” she said. “You know, Don was in the background in her commercial.”

That would be the commercial with the World War II-era B-17 at the Palm Springs Air Museum. Bono Mack’s father was a World War II veteran.

There’s at least one other reason the couple came out to vote today.

“If you don’t, you can’t complain,” she said.

Sun City Palm Desert resident talks props, presidency

Larry Schelhorse, a full-time resident of Sun City Palm Desert, doesn’t usually show up at the polls on Election Day.

“We normally vote absentee, but we had questions about the judges and the two propositions,” he said. “I wanted more information before making up my mind.”

Learning that those challenging the sitting judges had more leeway in making their case made a difference in how he voted.

“Knowing that helped a lot,” he said. “You have a larger filter of what you were hearing.”

On Prop. 29: “It’s a very complicated issue. Why are we being asked to decide this? This is something our legislature should do … I thought the arguments against are mainly false and misleading. Who’s coming out against this? Firefighters, teachers? It’s not about schools or those services.”

On the presidential election: “I think the Republican party has come really close to     removing any chance of winning. We’re seeing the destruction of the Republican party into splinter groups. I’m a registered Republican; I’m unitarian by preference and by persuasion, but I’m old school, not the Tea Party we have today.