Long Lines, Voting Machine Problems Frustrate Voters


Super Tuesday meant super long lines for voters in LA County....and that frustrated those waiting to cast a ballot. Polling locations reported an average wait of 90 minutes to 2 hours, but some voters who went to vote at the Santa Monica Libary, reported they waited 4 hours to vote.

On top of the long wait, some locations reported problems with the electronic check-in system and the new voting equipment itself, and that there was no one on hand to deal with those technical issues, further frustrating those standing in line waiting to cast their ballot.

As a result, officials have no idea when they will have a final count of votes. Even though the state has already been called for Bernie Sanders, but it remains to be seen how many of the state's delegates he will receive since California's delegates are awarded proportionally.

What concerned many was the fact that there were far fewer polling locations for this election than there have been in the past. L.A. County's new voting system, which took 10 years to design and develop and cost more than $300 million, was available in 1,000 locations for this election, that replaced the 4,500 neighborhood polling places used previously. LA County argued that fewer polling centers would ultimately be fine, because the process of voting would be easier and more accessible due to the fact that voting was open for 11 days prior to the election, from 8am-5pm, and voters could go and cast their vote anytime that was convenient for them.

But, it looks like many voters waited until Super Tuesday to vote, which seemed to overwhelm voting locations, which concerned the Bernie Sanders campaign enough to file emergency paperwork in federal court asking a judge to keep all L.A. County vote centers open until 10pm, allowing anyone in line by 10pm to vote.

The county considered the option but decided to stay with the 8pm closing time, meaning that anyone in line by 8pm would be allowed to vote.

L.A. County Supervisor, Janice Hahn on Wednesday called for an investigation into the voting problems saying she was 'not happy' with the amount of complaints she heard about, telling the L.A. Times:

"It was about a year-long, at least, process of testing these machines. There were focus groups about these machines, there was a lot of reports by our County Registrar Recorder. Of course, our Secretary of State, Alex Padilla certified these machines with a few conditions. I think we were all waiting for the proof which was yesterday and I'm not happy with the number of problems that just I was alerted to yesterday."

Dean Logan, LA County's Registrar Recorder told the L.A. Times he had hoped that things would have gone smoother for voters.

"This was a challenging day for a lot of voters in L.A. County, and I certainly apologize for that. That's something that has to be better."

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