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Voters Cast Ballots in Westwood, Century City

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Voters poured into Westwood and Century City polling places on Tuesday, eager to cast their votes in the local, state and presidential races.

Election Day got off to a shaky start at one Westwood polling place, when a site inspector called in sick and left Vintage Westwood Horizons without crucial voting equipment until just after 10 a.m.

Some voters were frustrated by the long lines and slowed process at the polling place.

"I think it's ridiculous," said Brad Ridgley, who decided to come back later in the afternoon to cast his ballot.

Yasemin Sarikaya, like many of Tuesday's voters, said there wasn't one specific issue that brought her to the polls. Instead, she said all were "equally important."

"[There was] no chance I wasn't going to vote," she said.

Polling places in the area were busy throughout the day, with steady streams of voters seen at Vintage Westwood Horizons, Emerson Middle School, St. Alban's Episcopal Church and Westfield Century City.

"Since I have the privilege to vote, I might as well do something about it," said Kristy Hwang, after voting at Vintage Westwood Horizons.

About 600 voters from two precincts had cast their ballots at Emerson Middle School by early Tuesday afternoon, said Luz Munoz, poll inspector, including first-time voter Violet Paley.

"I ... don't want this country to have to go through four years of Mitt Romney," said the 18-year-old, who was decked head to toe in Obama gear.

The polling place at Westfield Century City was "slammed" with voters throughout the day, the poll inspector there said. About 1,000 voters had cast their ballots by early Tuesday afternoon, which included hundreds of provisional ballots, according to estimates from poll workers.

Though she had a mail-in ballot, Westwood resident Michele Tucker and her dachshund Pee Wee, a "staunch Democrat," still decided to come to the polls at St. Alban's Episcopal Church.

"I decided I didn't want to mail in my ballot," she said before dressing Pee Wee in a "Dachshunds for Obama" sweater. "I wanted to hand deliver it."

UCLA graduate student Lauren Harrell said she voted for Proposition 30, which would raise the sales tax by one-quarter of one cent for four years while increasing personal income taxes for Californians who earn over $250,000 for seven years.

Some who support Proposition 30 argue its failure would have a devastating impact on schools, including in Los Angeles.

"As a UCLA student ... you kind of have to vote for it," Harrell said.

Tell us about your voting experience in the comments. Have photos from the polls? Upload them to the gallery above. 

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