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Southerners want leaders who can work together

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - As 62-year-old Umatac resident Pat Aguon Smith stood outside the now-closed down F.Q. Sanchez Elementary School, she admits she's not swayed to vote for incumbents in this year's senatorial race. "The problem about the school," she stated, "I'm really hurt because the senators didn't even try to help us in Umatac in keeping our school open.

"That's one thing that really hurts the community by closing FQ Sanchez."

Smith says she looks for a leader who helps people in need, someone like Republican mayoral candidate Johnny Quinata. Smith proudly waved outside the polling site in support of Quinata since 7 this morning and plans to for the rest of the day. Quinata is challenged by Democratic hopeful and former Umatac mayor Daniel Sanchez.

Despite a slow and rainy morning at the southern polling sites, officials anticipated that foot traffic would increase after 5pm, when residents got off from work.

In the village of Inarajan, 50-year-old Tom Diego says he anticipates a high voter turnout from the southern village, which has roughly 1,900 voters. He expects up to a 70 percent voter turnout. Diego was all smiles outside Inarajan Middle School this morning in support of his select mayoral candidate, Republican incumbent Franklin Taitague. Taitague is challenged by newcomer Doris Flores Lujan.

Aside from his vote for Taitague, Diego says he's voting for candidates in the congressional and senatorial race who can work in harmony. "I look for them to take care of the village of Inarajan, taking care of the people of Guam and doing the best job they can working together to make our island a better place with military buildup tourism and everything else and the environment."

Meanwhile, other mayoral races in the southern villages include Agat's incumbent, Republican carol Tayama verses William Cundiff; Agat's vice mayor incumbent republican Agustin Quintanilla verses newcomer Derek Baza Hills; incumbent Merizo mayor Ernest Chargualaf and Rosie Tainatongo; and lastly incumbent Jose Terlaje and Ken Joe Ada for the Yona mayoral race.

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