Hispanic community turns out massively in Texas voting


Registered Hispanic voters are turning out in large numbers in Texas on midterm Election Day to express their support for candidates who will represent their interests.

A veteran Latino activist in Austin, Elisa Montoya, told EFE that "the aim is not to orchestrate people's votes," but rather "to thank them for their participation at an important moment for the country," although she did not hide the fact that if voters engage her in further conversation she will encourage them to vote for candidates that she supports.

Montoya said that these elections are "the hour of women."

In Tuesday's vote, a third of the US Senate will be renewed, along with the entire House of Representatives, and in Texas 20 women are running for seats in Congress, along with 105 female candidates on the state level.

The lines at the polls are full of young Hispanics, many of them exercising their right to vote for the first time and seeking to be the face of change in Texas, for decades a bastion of the Republicans.

"We're tired of the aggressiveness of some politicians. We need someone who defends us and I think that we in the new generations need to commit ourselves to contribute to that," a 23-year-old Mexican-American named Leslie told EFE.

In Houston, the fourth-most-populous US city, voters in some districts complained that computer breakdowns, in both the registration and voting machines at some precincts, were resulting in long waits while the mistakes or breakdowns were corrected.

The technical chief for the Center for Democracy and Technology, Joseph Lorenzo Hall, told the Houston Chronicle that the system Harris County uses to check in voters makes it "easier for people to make mistakes using the machines."

Texas is expecting record voter participation on Tuesday, since of the state's 12 million registered voters some 4.8 million have already cast their ballots via "early voting," a figure exceeding the state's entire voter turnout during the 2014 midterms, according to the Texas Secretary of State.

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