Voter from Venezuela: Motherhood a choice
This was the second time Julio Vivas, 36, had voted, but this year’s elections had a special meaning to him. His wife, Gloria, 31, gave birth to their first daughter, Lia, in October. The new parents worry about the future of their daughter.
“Becoming a father has given me a different perspective and I want to help make this country better for my daughter,” he said.
Vivas was astonished to find he was the first person to arrive at his voting precinct, Coral Gate Park Community Center. Carrying a beach chair, a blanket and a cooler filled with snacks, he was expecting to find a lot of people waiting in line. To his surprise, he was wrong.
Vivas and his wife are immigrants from Maracaibo, Venezuela. He works as a sales manager at a Miami Beach car dealership and has been in the United States since he was a young boy, when his parents brought him in search of a better life. His wife, who is not able to vote because she is not yet a citizen, has been in the country for three years and is a stay-at-home mom. Immigration is a crucial subject to him and he is voting for the candidate he feels has his best interests at heart.
“I am very pleased with President Obama’s immigration policies,” he said.
The Obama administration announced a policy earlier this year that will allow young illegal immigrants to apply for a program that will permit them to live and work in the United States for a period of two years, a time when they won’t have to worry about deportation.
“I am voting for Obama. He really gets us,” he said.
Vivas believes that Obama identifies with middle-class Americans and understands their struggles and what they truly need better than former Gov. Mitt Romney.
Vivas also considers himself pro-choice and believes that abortion can, in some cases, be a better alternative than motherhood for some women.
“There are a lot of poor and unwanted children in the world. Giving women a choice could help lower these statistics,” he said. He thinks that motherhood is a very personal choice and is a decision that only the mother-to-be should be entitled to make.