Thursday , October 28 2021

Long lines, machine malfunctions vote on Election Day



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ATLANTA (AP) – Os sinais de problemas que xurdiron durante as semanas de votación anticipada realizáronse no Día das eleccións, xa que algúns electores de todo o país enfrontábanse durante longas horas, mal funcionando os equipos de votación e os prazos inesperadamente pechados.

Algunhas das maiores copias de seguridade foron en Xeorxia, onde a carreira do gobernador estaba entre os concursos de medio prazo máis atendidos do país e xerou unha forte participación.


Un elector no condado de Gwinnett, Ontaria Woods, agardou máis de tres horas e dixo que viu preto de dúas ducias de persoas que votaron por mor das súas liñas.

"Intentamos dicirlles que esperen, pero a xente ten fillos. A xente está a pasar fame. A xente está cansa", dixo Woods.

O bo grupo de goberno Common Cause culpou a alta participación combinada con moi poucas máquinas de votación, boletas e traballadores.


O representante de eleccións do condado de Fulton, Richard Barron, recoñeceu que algúns recintos tiñan liñas de votantes pero dixeron que se debía á duración das votacións e as máquinas de votación que se tiveron de usar debido a un proceso en curso.



Mentres a votación continuou sen enganar en moitas comunidades, os electores de Nova York a Arizona enfrontáronse a longas liñas e mal funcionando.

En toda a cidade de Nova York, os informes de escáneres rotos apareceron en varios lugares de votación. A recepción foi tan pesada nun recinto embalado no Upper West Side de Manhattan que a liña para escanear boletas estendidas ao redor dun ximnasio de secundaria. Os traballadores encuestados dixeron aos electores que dúas das preto de media ducia de escáneres estaban mal funcionando e que as reparaciones estaban en marcha.

Os electores que chegaron a dúas mesas de votación separadas descubriron que a maioría dos escáneres rompíanse, forzando a que algunhas persoas abandonasen as súas papeletas en "cédulas de emerxencia" ou votas mediante unha papeleta de declaración jurada.

"Hai escáneres rotos en todas partes en Brooklyn", declarou a AP a Stefan Ringel, portavoz do presidente do condado de Brooklyn, Eric Adams.

El dixo que Adams e os seus empregados están sendo inundados con chamadas telefónicas, correos electrónicos e mensaxes de texto que informan avarías en máis dunha ducia de barrios.

Comparado coas eleccións de 2016, dixo, "anecdóticamente, parece peor, e hai confusión entre os traballadores das enquisas sobre o que facer".

Moitos electores, con todo, encerrárono, determinados a emitir a súa boleta electoral.

"A xente está grata e frustrada, pero positivo dun xeito raro, facendo chistes e falando uns cos outros. Creo que é porque todos estamos no" ninguén vai parar o noso estado de ánimo ", dixo Nikki Euell, produtor de publicidade. que esperou máis de dúas horas para votar no barrio de Greenpoint de Brooklyn.


As avarías locais son un síntoma dun problema maior coa infraestrutura de voto do país, dixo Lawrence Norden, experto en tecnoloxía de votación co Centro Brennan.

More than 40 states use computerized voting machines that are more than a decade old or are no longer manufactured.

"It's further evidence, if any was needed, that it's long past time to modernize our voting infrastructure," Norden said. "Voters have a right to be frustrated by long lines. And they have a right to expect voting machines that work and have a paper backup."

Elsewhere, polling place confusion caused problems for voters and poll workers.

In Phoenix, a polling site was foreclosed on overnight. The owners of the property locked the doors, taking election officials by surprise. Voters had been sent to another precinct nearby, but Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes tweeted that the location in Chandler was up and running shortly after 7 a.m. Tuesday.

For about an hour after polls opened Tuesday morning, a Sarasota County, Florida, precinct had to tell voters to come back later because their ballots were not available.

In one Indiana county, voting was snarled for hours because of what election officials say were computer problems checking in voters while in another part of the state a judge ordered 12 polling places in a northwestern Indiana county to stay open late after voting didn't start as scheduled.

In Texas, home of a hotly contested U.S. Senate race, delays were reported in Houston after apparent issues with registration check-in machines at some polling places.

And in El Paso, the U.S. Border Patrol canceled a "crowd control exercise" that was scheduled for Tuesday, following criticism from civil liberties groups that it could dissuade people from voting.

Border Patrol agent Fidel Baca confirmed Tuesday that the exercise in a Latino neighborhood of El Paso was canceled, but declined to say why. The Texas Civil Rights Project says the exercise, billed by the Border Patrol as a "mobile field force demonstration," was to be held within a half-mile of a polling site.

Tuesday's election marks the first nationwide voting since Russia targeted state election systems in the 2016 presidential race. Federal, state and local officials have been working to make the nation's myriad election systems more secure. They have beefed up their cybersecurity protections and improved communications and intelligence-sharing.

There have been no signs so far that Russia or any other foreign actor has tried to launch cyberattacks against voting systems in any state, according to federal authorities. There was also no indication that any systems have been compromised that would prevent voting, change vote counts, or disrupt the ability to tally votes, U.S. officials said.

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Long and Balsamo reported from Washington.

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Associated Press writers Frank Bajak in Boston, Thomas Davies in Indianapolis, Verena Dobnik and Jennifer Peltz in New York, Jennifer Kay in Miami and Ryan Tarinelli in Dallas contributed to this story.

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Follow Christina Almeida Cassidy at https://twitter.com/AP_Christina , Colleen Long at http://twitter.com/ctlong1 and Michael Balsamo at http://twitter.com/MikeBalsamo1 .

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For AP's complete coverage of the U.S. midterm elections: http://apne.ws/APPolitics

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