Polls have been open in the Ninth District and across Forest Hills since 6 a.m., and already, thousands of people have visited their local polling places.
For many voters in the area, the race comes down to one of two things: the state of the economy, and the importance of social safety net programs like Medicare and Social Security.
However, more than the national issues, local voters said that the way the Ninth District campaign has been run by both sides was concerning.
The most common complaint from local voters centered around the huge numbers of robo-calls they got from both the Republican and the Democrat, and the dozens of mailers that Democrat David Weprin blanketed the district with.
“Somebody should tell the politicians to stop overwhelming us with calls,” said Stanley Swiatocha, 62. “It’s out of control.”
Nino Farducchi, a retired carpenter, agreed.
“These politicians, they’ve got to put party aside and work together,” Farducchi said. “I’m very disappointed.”
“I voted today, basically to send a message to Obama,” said Jose Almeida, 53, of Forest Hills. The economic plan that he’s tried is not working, he’s not done anything on immigration. We have to deal with unemployment that’s now at 9.1 percent—and for Hispanics it’s 11 percent.”
Almeida said he felt Turner was more likely to bring about the change he’s looking for.
Other conservative voters leaving the poll said that federal spending levels had grown far beyond what they were comfortable with.
Voters who broke for Turner tended to cite to issues: the Tea Party, and protecting social programs.
“I voted today not to put another Tea Party person in office,” said Marlyne Adman. “They don’t know how to cooperate. They just want to stamp their feet like little kids, and that’s not how you solve problems…These people do not represent this area in the slightest.”
William and Dorothy Kirchstetter, of Forest Hills, said their votes were for the Democrat to protect Social Security.
“We can’t have cuts to those very important services,” Dorothy said. “Social Security is just too important to us.”