Greetings Wonketeers, and welcome to the day before the day before the beginning of the next four years of our lives! Yes, as of Tuesday we can hopefully stop hearing about Mitt Romney and Bronco Bama, and move on to either sighing with relief or planning our move to Canada. But first, let us pause to drive ourselves into a frenzy as we worry about “voter irregularities” in swing states: True the Vote observers/volunteers, your Romney lying training sessions, your mail-in ballots that have been casually thrown away, billboards en espanol asking for voter IDs…we got it all right here. A tour of the elections process in the Greatest Country on Earth, after the fold!
Let’s start with Florida, where a bomb squad detonated a “suspicious package” at an early voting site over the weekend. Before that, over 500 votes had disappeared from tallies in Broward County, mostly from African American neighborhoods, when someone “transposed numbers” like 1050 and 1150. This, of course, was after Governor Rick Scott had purged the voter rolls of people like this 91-year-old war hero. Other problems recently surfaced with the state’s handling of mail-in ballots, given that elections officials simply throw out ballots with any irregularities. Under a Florida law passed last year, election workers must compare the signature to the one they have on file for the voter registration, even if it has not been updated in decades, and there is no way of knowing if your ballot has been thrown out, and no way to re-cast your vote if it has. According to Reuters:
National law requires equipment at voting stations that informs voters of ballot issues and lets them fix them; fix-it opportunities are not mandated for mail-in ballots.
As a result, mail-in ballot voters who manage to get a ballot to election officials are about four times more likely to see their vote go uncounted as those who vote in person, Stewart calculates.
In Volusia County, over 150 ballots have been thrown out because the signature on the ballot did not match the one on the registration card.
Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted kicked off the election home stretch by only extended voting hours in GOP strongholds, and then canceling them only after people pointed out this was somewhat unfair. Worried that voters would get “confused,” he then ignored a judge’s court order to instate early voting in all districts. Oh and Ohio Wonketteers, when you vote on Tuesday, be sure and say hi to the True the Vote volunteers who have been installed as election officials.
Poll-watchers in Wisconsin will be sure to give you a hand with any questions you have on election day, now that they’ve been given the great gift of lying by Mitt Romney. Also in Wisconsin — as in Ohio — poor, minority neighborhoods have not only been been kindly informed that voter fraud is a felony but also invited to bring ID to the polls if they happen to feel like it.
This one comes courtesy a Wonketeer and volunteer observer who sent us the following email, which we are posting with his permission:
In the last two weeks I have been told by election judges -
I am not allowed to speak to voters beyond the neutral zone outside.
I am not allowed to leave my seat so I could observe when a voter has a problem. (two locations)
A Republican observer, after being ejected by the Judge for making numerous unfounded objections to slow the vote was reinstated on the same day at the same location by the BoE.
A Voting Machine Technician told two outside observers we would be under shariah law if the President was reelected.
Arizona’s Maricopa County “listed the wrong [election] date in the Spanish version of voter registration cards, a development likely to further complicate tense relations between local authorities and Latino residents,” according to CNN. Given that Maricopa County is home to this shitbag, we’d say that the relationship between local authorities and Latino residents is already in the toilet, but that’s just our opinion. In case you didn’t get the wrong date on your Spanish language ballot, GOP robocalls helpfully gave the wrong polling places and times to Democratic households.
In Virginia, voter registration forms were found in a recycling bin on a few occasions, leading to a voter fraud case that has expanded to include Strategic Allied Consulting, a contractor for the Republican Party of Virginia.
Be careful out there, Floridians and Spanishes and poll watchers! And send your election hijinks tips to firstname.lastname@example.org!