Phoenix, Arizona. — With the mariachi intonating the Mornings and showing a teenage-like political enthusiasm, Nina Felix celebrated exercising her right to elect a president of the United States for the twentieth time.
He first attended the polls during the election contest given by the third presidential term to Franklin D. Roosevelt, during the darkest times known to mankind, in 1940. “This November is 100 years old, and since I was 18 years old I have fulfilled my obligation to vote, always a Democrat, and I will continue to do so as long as life allows me to,” he tells EL UNIVERSAL.
“It’s the party that comes closer to my ideals and principles,” he replies to an express question about his continued solidarity with a party that, since 1952, has been defeated in Arizona by Republicans, except for Bill Clinton’s 1996 triumph.
Whoever was responsible for the three-decade cafeteria of a school in the North Willow Square neighborhood, located east of downtown Phoenix, assured that his vote to Biden was a dedicatory vote. “I voted thinking about science and medical staff,” he says. I hope everyone will listen to the doctors and report well on this pandemic that affects us all.”
Arizona spent election day recording an increase in covid-19 hospitalization cases. On Sunday there were 918 people hospitalized, above 875 the previous day. The figure represents the highest number since August.
While Nina continued her election marathon, with enormous enthusiasm Alexis Delgado García, 19, embarked on the race by cast her vote for the first time. “It was very emotional to tell my mom in the morning that she was leaving home to go to vote,” she says. He is the first of the Delgado García family to obtain the right to vote.
Coming from Chihuahua, his parents arrived in Arizona at the age of 14 and to date lack documents and the ability to define the future of this country through participation in the polls. Alexis was born here, along with her two little sisters.
“This vote represents not only the five of us at home, but the millions of undocumented who cannot be heard and the thousands of young people with DACA [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals] who are in limbo (…) The ignore of all these young people [of the DACA] is very serious, because the election of this president [Donald Trump] and how it conforms to Congress has a direct impact on them, on youth.” The psychology student went to the box on Dunplan Avenue as soon as it opened, at 06:00 a.m.
To his surprise, considering that of the 4.2 million registered voters, 2.3 million did so in advance, people were found to be in line, about thirty.
“Pass him young, don’t hide, the line is moving fast,” says a woman who came to vote with water cover and anti-Covid protective mica. Seeing the line, the University of Arizona Psychology student reacted, “What a squeak!” He interpreted the presence of so many people as a sign of the great interest in exercising the vote.
“We know that this administration is not for us, it does not want people of color, it insults and discriminates against us, and its economic model serves the richest. So I’m inspired by people of color, who, despite all the adversity, keep fighting, fighting, looking for change,” says the son of a father who works in three different places to pay for his studies.
As night fell, in a huge projector mounted on the esplanade of the headquarters of Living United for Change in Arizona (LUCHA), members of the organization that mobilized an army of a thousand young people to boost the vote in the Latino community in favor of change watched nervously the first results.
The first positive sign came minutes after the polls closed, with the forecast that 70% of Latino voters would have supported Biden. It was then confirmed that independent voters had gone to the polls.
Two and a half hours, after the closing of the polls, euphoria finally erupted, when Arizona appeared in blue on the map of the United States; Biden had nearly 300,000 votes ahead of Trump. “The 10-year struggle has finally paid for results, Arizona has been painted blue. Today we have taken over,” says Tomas Robles, co-director of the organization Living United for Change in Arizona, amid applause from dreamers, single mothers and activists. “It’s an amazing thing, a new story, the result of youth leadership, the participation of women, especially Latinas.”
The election would also have given the victory to former candidate Mark Kelly in the Senate, according to initial data. If certified, for the first time since 1952, two Democratic senators will represent Arizona in Congress.
“If we win the Senate it will be a great opportunity to pass laws that will be better for our Latin American community,” Robles says, while his colleague Alejandra Gomez stresses that from this moment on “there will be no more room for Trump bullying in Arizona.”