Linda Hall: Vote early, vote often

Linda Hall: Vote early, vote often

Image Kittyfly

IT must have been just as summer began in 1976. My husband was working away and because school had finished, our daughter and I went with him.

We were watching the news after lunch in the hotel where we were staying when suddenly it all became much less boring when a very handsome man appeared on the screen.

He was wearing the white summer uniform of the Movimiento, the only thing approaching a political organisation that was still permitted seven months after Franco’s death.

“Who’s that?” I asked my husband.

“Adolfo Suárez, the Movimiento minister,” he said, with a distaste which intensified after I remarked that he was exceptionally good-looking.

When Suárez was named president of the Spanish government days later, my husband like many others, thought little would change.

He was wrong. In November of that same year, the Cortes – not yet the parliament we know now– announced the December 15 referendum on political reform that opened the door to the Transition.

On the very few occasions when the Spanish had voted in past referendums, they voted the way they felt they were supposed to, so 97.36 per cent said Yes this time too.

Nobody needed to buy votes that day although it was obvious that not everybody had quite got the hang of voting.

Chatting that afternoon in the small Benidorm supermarket near our apartment, the owner mentioned that he and his wife had made an early start to go up to Callosa to vote.  In those days practically all the supermarkets – and stalls in the municipal market – were owned by Callosines, so it made sense that they’d have gone there to vote.

“Then of course we had to get back here in time to vote again,” he told me.  “It’s important to vote, you know, especially if you want a favour from the town hall.”

Neither Callosa nor Benidorm was Chicago, but it definitely gave a Spanish accent to the exhortation, “Vote early and vote often.”

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Written by

Linda Hall

Originally from the UK, Linda is based in Valenca and is a reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering local news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at