From long lines to broken machines, voters across the country are facing a number of problems as they attempt to cast their ballot.
The surge in voter turnout, and voting laws in places like New York which don’t have early voting, have created massive lines at poll stations. This is good, but the downside is that these lines also indicate the inadequacy of our system. There are malfunctioning machines and likely not enough polling locations that are holding up voters in cities across the 50 states.
Voters in Houston, Texas, according to the Houston Chronicle, are seeing massive lines thanks to technical difficulties. Some of the machines overloaded, while others were at the mercy of volunteers who had trouble scanning barcodes to access the machines. As a result, some voters are turning in provisional ballots.
In North Carolina, humidity is apparently causing problems with the machines that count ballots. As a result, some ballots are being stored in “emergency bins” to be tabulated at a later time.
Meanwhile, sheer stupidity seems to be the problem in Georgia, where a polling station in Snellville became ineffective because there were no power cords supplied with the voting machines.
According to Slate, voters have been turned away in Detroit and Georgia, Indiana due to other technical issues including frozen machines and errors with the ExpressPoll system. Some voters in South Carolina also claimed to have their votes “changed to the opposite party because of to calibration issues.” Kansas and Missouri are having machine issues too, and ballots have gone missing in Baltimore.
People are pointing to these problems as signs of voter suppression. With all these issues, Google searches of provisional ballots have spiked, according to ProPublica, and people have fled long lines. It may seem disastrous, but there is still time to vote, and it is worth it. If you can get to a poll, go vote. Here’s a bunch of free stuff you can get if you do.