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Woman in labor stops to vote in Florida on way to hospital

Oct. 29 (UPI) -- A woman in labor had her husband stop on the way to a Florida hospital for the birth of their child so she could cast her vote.

Karen Briceno Gonzalez, an employee of the Orange County Supervisor of Elections, said she was processing voter ballots about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday when a man came in with his wife's driver's license.

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The man explained his wife was outside in the car and wanted to cast her vote.

"I go, 'We need her here,' and he basically told me that's gonna be a problem because she refuses to go to the hospital until she votes," Briceno Gonzalez told WKMG-TV.

The man explained his wife was in labor and insisted on voting before going to the hospital.

Briceno Gonzalez said she initially took a mail-in ballot out to the woman, but she refused it.

"She said 'No, no, no, I need to fill it out right now," Briceno Gonzalez recalled.

Briceno Gonzalez waited while the woman completed the ballot.

"So the woman in labor filled out her ballot while doing a little controlled breathing," she told WESH-TV.

She admitted it was an unusual incident for elections employees.

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"It was an odd situation, but she wanted to vote, and that was her right as an American citizen," Briceno Gonzalez said.

She said the grateful couple left after the woman cast her ballot.

"We want to facilitate every voter that is eligible to vote, the right to vote, no matter their circumstances, no matter the situation, Briceno Gonzalez said.

"I understand the importance of this election to some people. I gave her an 'I Voted' sticker, and she was on her way to the hospital. She was very happy that she got to vote."

Elections officials said they plan to send the woman a onesie reading "First Vote" for the baby, as well as some "Future Voter" stickers.

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