Jubilant Egyptians at Polls for Second Day

Despite months of unrest, mood remains upbeat
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2012 6:01 AM CDT
Updated May 24, 2012 7:30 AM CDT
Jubilant Egyptians at Polls for Second Day
An Egyptian man casts his ballot on the second day of Egypt's historic presidential election, at a polling station in Cairo earlier today.   (Getty Images)

Millions of Egyptians went to the polls for a second day today, as the country votes on their first freely chosen president in history, reports the New York Times. So far, voter turnout appears lower than yesterday, but today has been made a holiday so public sector employees can vote, too. "It is like honey to my heart," says a 36-year-old accountant in Cairo. "For the first time in my life, I feel like I have a role to play. My vote could possibly make a difference."

There were a few reports of violence today, with one candidate, Ahmed Shafik, a former air force general running on a law-and-order platform, chased by a mob throwing rocks and shoes. Since a popular uprising started 15 months ago, Egypt has been riven by unrest and factionalism, but for the past two days at least, most seem elated and overwhelmed to be having an election. "It is amazing; all the factions are represented," says a 52-year-old Christian engineer. If none of the 13 candidates wins a simple majority, a runoff election will be held next month. (More Egypt stories.)

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