Voters of all stripes headed to polls across Ward 6 on Tuesday morning and afternoon. Hill Now spoke with volunteers and voters about what they’re seeing across the neighborhood.
At Watkins Elementary School (420 12th St. SE), campaign volunteers reported a constant flow of voters.
“It’s been slow but steady,” said Yvette Dowell, a volunteer for mayoral candidate Carol Schwartz. “We’re hoping things will pick up when a lot of the federal employees get off work.”
Schwartz, a Hill resident for almost 3 years, said she hoped her older neighbors would remember Schwartz’ record.
In Southwest, Paul Kuntzler, a volunteer for the David Catania campaign, waited for voters at Friendship Baptist Church (900 Delaware Ave. SW) with a pale blue sign attached to his body. Kuntzler, 72, is the co-founder of the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, the LGBT political group.
“David Catania is the most qualified candidate ever in D.C,” he said. Kuntzler praised the mayoral candidate’s record on education and health care, and outlined how much money Catania’s prescription drug legislation has saved for seniors.
At King Greenleaf Recreation Center (201 N St. SW), voter Amy Patton said she headed to the polls to try to build strong schools. She said she’s a regular voter, but none of the candidates in this election cycle excited her.
Further east, Donna Hart campaigned for her son Josh Hart, a candidate for the ANC 6D07 seat, outside Van Ness Elementary School (1150 5th St. SE). She said her son is a born leader.
“When he was 5 years old, he would stand in front of the TV and criticize Ronald Reagan. He watched CSPAN so much he knew the reps by their voices,” she said.
Josh Hart, who previously served as an ANC commissioner in Northwest, supports mixed-income development.
At Eastern Market, Melvin Clay, a volunteer for the D.C. Cannabis Campaign, spoke with voters and said he hoped people who used the paper ballot would read the entire thing.
“Fingers crossed that people just look at the back of the ballot,” Clay, 20, said. “If we do lose, being on the back might be the reason why.”
Almost 65 percent of registered voters in Ward 6 voted in the 2012 general election, surpassing the citywide figure of about 61 percent, Board of Elections records show.
Neal Shelley, an emergency room doctor, said he voted at Eastern Market to fulfill a basic civil duty.
“You can’t really complain about anything unless you take the time to vote,” he said.