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Tuesday, May 2

Election Day: "It's Very Chaotic In There"

I'm on a quick break from working my polling place, where I'm running for Democratic precinct committee member and I'm campaigning for 9th District State Representative candidate Julian Rogers (D-Cleveland Heights). It's a beautiful day, turnout is light, and none of the electronic voting machines are working.

One voter came out of the polling place early in the morning (when the time it took to vote was very long) and said, "Call your candidate. None of the machines are working, everyone has to vote on paper. It's very chaotic in there. I wouldn't trust it as to security." I made the call. I also called the Plain Dealer.

Later, another voter came up to me and said "I couldn't vote for your guy [Rogers] because I had to vote a Republican ballot in order to vote against [Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken] Blackwell. But the big irony is, none of his machines are working."

There's a nice woman there handing out leaflets with a picture of Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Cleveland) and the unendorsed candidate for Governor, Bryan Flannery (D-Strongsville). The leaflet is marked as paid for by Flannery's campaign. Memo to Rep. Ted Strickland and ODP Chairman Chris Redfern: get off your high horses, make a public apology to Rep. Tubbs Jones for how she was treated last fall, and let's get this party all singing the same tune again. Now.

UPDATE: Someone came out from the Board of Elections and the machines were working as of some time between 11:00 and 11:30 am. I really wonder when (or whether) the optical scan ballots from before that time will be counted. Since the machines have been working some voters have said that they had no difficulty with voting, a few others have said that they had to get a new voter card or otherwise do the process over.


At 11:25 AM, Blogger Pauli said...

Funny, but there were no problems at my polling place. All the machines were working as evidenced by the short lines and high throughput at all 3 precincts. It took me no longer than 2 minutes to vote. I left my coffee in the car and it was hot when I came back. Your anecdote sounds like it's probably representative of a localized problem.

At 1:55 PM, Blogger Marvin the Robot said...

I write for teh Columbus Post, and would like to hear more about your story. Please contact me


At 3:35 PM, Anonymous Earl from ohio said...

The first two validation cards read as "already used, remove from machine." Third time was the charm.

At 3:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was making GOTV calls today and had one interesting one.

I happen to know the guy and I know that he's pretty liberal - BUT he refused to vote in the primary because "I can't give up my independent status."

Which means that come this fall when he cannot vote for Judge Sikora or Subodh Chandra, well... in America, we "get the government we deserve."

BTW, in our area turnout is miniscule.

At 4:13 PM, Blogger Jill said...

Thanks, Jeff.

Is that Wendy Leatherberry in one of the pics? I never had her dad at Case, but he's a nice guy and they are perennial guests at Peter Sikora's July 4th gathering.

At 8:37 PM, Blogger pilgrim99 said...

Hey, thanks for quoting me. And thanks even more for making the calls. About the "chaos"...it was obvious the poll workers didn't have a backup plan.

But how do you not guarantee that all the parts of the machines are ready to go in the first place? Inside, they told us it would be 15 minutes or so to get the memory cards installed. And the machines didn't get going until lunchtime!?

I was furious when I left the polls at Church of the Saviour, and you were the first person I saw whom I thought could make some noise about it. I called the PD and Sun papers when I got to work, but they said they were already getting a lot of calls.

At 9:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cute photos!


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