Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Dolphins stadium proposal was failing at the polls, vote tally shows

From: Naked Politics

The Miami Dolphins’ short-lived campaign for a subsidized Sun Life Stadium renovation appeared doomed from the start.

A sizeable majority of Miami-Dade voters who cast ballots in the special stadium election before it was called off opposed the $350 million makeover, according to a count the elections department released late Tuesday.

The tabulation shows that among the 60,678 voters who voted by mail or at early-voting sites, 57 percent opposed the Dolphins’ proposal, compared to 43 percent who favored it.

Though partial results for an incomplete election, the vote tally provides a snapshot of the opinion of voters who voted early, despite not knowing whether their ballots would ultimately count.

A countywide vote had been scheduled for Tuesday but required approval from Florida lawmakers, who concluded their annual session without taking up Dolphins-backed legislation. With the bill in limbo until the last day of session, voters began casting absentee and early ballots in the most unusual of elections where their votes wound up being moot.

 That didn’t bother Andres Moya, a 58-year old registered Democrat who voted by mail against the renovation.

“I wouldn’t give money to anybody who doesn’t need it: a guy who’s a multi-billionaire,” said Moya, a retired county worker who lives in the Coral Terrace area.

“I was glad that it did not go to a vote,” he added. “And I don’t think it was going to pass.”

The Dolphins spent nearly $10 million on the referendum: $4.8 million to cover the election costs and $4.5 million on an exhaustive political campaign to lure reliable voters to the polls. Glossy campaign fliers kept hitting mailboxes for several days after the election had been canceled.

More than 60,000 voters had cast ballots by the time the referendum was abruptly called off. Of those, the elections department only tabulated the early votes and the absentee ballots that had been opened and verified up to that point.

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