Voting problems crop up early on Election Day
Complaints in Fla., Ind., Ohio, as workers tangle with new machines, rules
Early-morning voters use machines to cast their ballots Tuesday at Grace Baptist Church in Cedarville, Ohio.
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Kiichiro Sato / AP
* Voter intimidation alleged in Va.
Nov. 7: The FBI is looking into the possibility of voter intimidation in the Virginia Senate race. Hardball’s David Shuster reports.
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MSNBC staff and news service reports
Updated: 8 minutes ago
WASHINGTON – Programming errors and inexperience dealing with electronic voting machines frustrated poll workers in hundreds of precincts early Tuesday, delaying voters in Indiana, Ohio and Florida and leaving some with little choice but to use paper ballots instead.
In Cleveland, voters rolled their eyes as election workers fumbled with new touchscreen machines that they couldn’t get to start properly until about 10 minutes after polls opened.
“We got five machines – one of them’s got to work,” said Willette Scullank, a trouble shooter from the Cuyahoga County, Ohio, elections board.
In Indiana’s Marion County, about 175 of 914 precincts turned to paper because poll workers didn’t know how to run the machines, said Marion County Clerk Doris Ann Sadler. She said it could take most of the day to fix all of the machine-related issues.
Election officials in Delaware County, Ind., planned to seek a court order to extend voting after an apparent computer error prevented voters from casting ballots in 75 precincts there. County Clerk Karen Wenger said the cards that activate the machines were programmed incorrectly.
“We are working with precincts one-by-one over the telephone to get the problem fixed,” Wenger said.