Politics New Yorkers Brave Depressingly Long Lines on First Weekend of Early Voting
Georgia's pandemic primary was a disaster. Experts fear the state is still vulnerable to a repeat.
The long lines and absentee ballot snags that plagued Georgia's June primary were just the latest problems in a state that has become a ground-zero for voting issues. While changes were made in its aftermath, some fear the state remains unprepared.It was not what she had planned.
Saturday marked the first time New Yorkers could vote early and in-person for a presidential election, and voters around the city lined up to do their civic duty, with manyfor the privilege. The scenes were simultaneously inspiring and infuriating — a reminder of New Yorkers’ investment in the election, but also the widely agreed-upon incompetence of the city and state’s election administration.
As of Sunday evening, 193,915 New Yorkers across the five boroughs had voted in person,. More long lines immediately cropped up on Monday morning on a grey and drizzly day in the city.
Absentee or early voting? Here is the best way to vote in 2020, according to experts and activists
Many Americans are concerned about the risk of catching COVID-19 at the polls. They also worry about their vote being counted.The 2020 election is on track for record voter turnout as the nation battles the COVID-19 pandemic, a fight for racial equality and an economic recession. More than 35 million people have already voted.
On Sunday, the crowded scenes prompted a rebuke from Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
This is some cold truth from— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) . If NYC were in a swing state, its election administration would be a national outrage.
“There is no place in the United States of America where two, three, four-hour waits to vote is acceptable,’’ she said. “
Mayor de Blasio alsoon Monday morning, calling on the Board of Elections to add staff to deal with the crush of people turning out.
The crowds are likely to dissipate somewhat during the week. But New York offers only nine days of early voting, which compares poorly to. (California starts voting 29 days before the election and Texas 22, for example.) The city’s Board of Elections also put into place confusing rules about where people could cast their ballots early; only a fraction of election-day voting sites, 88 out of 1,201, are early-voting locations.
Voting 2020 live updates: President Trump expected to cast Florida ballot; Delaware voters won't be forced to wear masks
President Trump expected to vote in West Palm Beach. Delaware voters don't have to wear masks. Advice on how to vote. Latest news from across the U.S.That's a lot of voters. A perhaps record number are expected to cast ballots this weekend, either by mail or at early in-person voting sites across the country. (Need help registering to vote? Check our guide.
That it took until 2019 for early voting to arrive in New York — even as it became commonplace around the country years earlier — is a testament both to election-administration dysfunction across the state and political deadlock. State Republicans had for years blocked early voting, but were powerless to do so once Democrats took full control of New York government in 2018.
But that innovation has hardly solved the many deep-seated problems at the city’s Board of Elections, which, despite decades of widely agreed-upon ineptness, seems utterly resistant to reform. The New York Times has andiving into the sclerotic institution, which it describes as a “a century-old system of local election administration that is one of the last vestiges of pure patronage in government.” Jobs (which are duplicated between Democratic and Republican staffers, an arrangement unique to the state) often go to relatives of politicians or power brokers. Gross negligence is commonplace. And despite a string of high-profile mistakes over the years (catastrophic lines, mistaken voter purges, possibly pivotal ballots found in ceiling tiles) and decades of calls for reform, nothing much has changed.
The week in polls: Trump gains in 9 of 12 swing states, but Biden still leads in 10 of them
With just eight days to go to Election Day, both national polls and swing state surveys make it clear the race between Trump and Biden is tightening.President Donald Trump gained on his Democratic challenger Joe Biden in national polling averages, and in nine of 12 contested states. But Biden still holds a sizable lead in the national polls and is still ahead of Trump in 10 of the 12 states that could decide the election.
The ineptitude has extended to issues with mail-in voting, a new wrinkle during the pandemic. During the primary, some ballots weren’t sent to voters until the day before the election, and many thousandsover issues with postmarks. And during the general election, about 100,000 ballots were , an issue the Board blamed on a vendor error.
Given all that, it is understandable that New Yorkers would rather personally see their ballots entered into an electronic scanner — sadly, theare long gone — than send them into the ether. The fact that they may need to stand for hours in the process is far from ideal.
Polling averages show Trump gaining on Biden in most swing states. Will it be enough? .
Trump gained on Biden in polling average in 9 of 12 swing states since Monday, continuing last week's trend. But of those, he is only ahead in Texas.The deadline for early voting ends Friday in several states where the race is tight, including Arizona, Georgia, Nevada and Texas – and on Saturday in the key states of Florida and North Carolina. Though early turnout appears to favor Democrats in many states, Republicans are gaining ground quickly in Florida and other early voting states.