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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Delegates cast official votes for Obama



The votes that really count have been cast. 

Florida delegates, with their sought-after 29 electoral votes, submitted their ballots for President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden during a ceremony in Tallahassee's Senate chamber Monday.

State law doesn't require delegates to cast their ballots in accordance with the popular vote. But the delegates had sworn allegiance to the Democratic Party, and Obama and Biden were the only names on the ballot.

Rod Smith, Democratic Party chairman, and Ashley Walker, leader of Florida's Obama campaign, were among the delegates. Several state Democratic senators and representatives were also selected.

The room was silent when votes were cast, even as some delegates cradled their small children or took photos of one another.

Secretary of State Ken Detzner carefully followed the rules as he presided over the ceremony.

Rep. Alan William, D-Tallahassee, a long-time volunteer for Obama's campaign, said this is a day he'll honor and remember for the rest of his life.

"It's not lost on me that when I sign my name, I'm signing my name for all of those individuals who stood in line for hours and hours, whether they voted for Obama or not," Williams said.

Nationwide, 538 electors will travel to their state capitals today to vote for the candidate chosen by the people of their state. The Obama-Biden ticket won 27 states--or 332 electoral votes, and the Romney-Ryan ticket won 24 states, or 206 votes.

Biden, who also leads the Senate, will read the votes out loud and officiate the results during a joint session of Congress Jan. 6. 

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[Last modified: Monday, December 17, 2012 3:43pm]


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