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Local businesses offer election day freebies

Lawton_This Presidential election is like none we've experienced before, with lines and lines of voters headed to the polls to cast their ballots.  Lines at Comanche County polls were longer than they have ever been in any Presidential election.  However, on Tuesday, voting lines weren't the only lines that wrapped around buildings.  Some local businesses were hopping as well.

Chick-Fil-A in Lawton was one of the many restaurants across the country handing out freebies in exchange for an "I Voted" sticker.  Owner David Pope says this year's unique election calls for a unique event like free chicken for every voter's sticker turned in.  He says they have never done anything like this in the past, and were not prepared for the onslaught that came at lunchtime. 

If voters were surprised to see how long the voting lines were, they may have been even more surprised to see Pope guiding traffic in his parking lot - all for one cause.  Voter Aida Santiago waited almost an hour to cast her vote, and another 15 minutes to get a chicken sandwich.  It's time she says was well spent.  "It's very important," she said.  "It's a privilege that we have to live in this country."

Another hungry voter, Joyce McMillar, says the free sandwich is more than just food - it's a consolation prize.  "I just think it basically shows everyone's patriotism because you got out and voted, and so now you want to get something in return," she said.  "Even if your candidate doesn't win, you still got a free sandwich out of it."  Voter Jack Johnson says the sandwich was a bonus.  "I vote every time anyway, so whether you get a sandwich or not, vote," he said.

Like so many other voters, Chick-Fil-A didn't expect such a large turnout.  The restaurant originally advertised that voters could get a free chicken sandwich in exchange for an "I Voted" sticker, and since then, they have given away more than 2,000 sandwiches.  On Tuesday afternoon they were running out of buns and they were hoping folks would start asking for nuggets instead.

McDonald's and Starbucks in Lawton also handed out freebies to customers who voted on Tuesday.

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