Election Day Open Thread

Flickr photo via WNYC

Flickr photo via WNYC

How are the lines at your polling place? Any last thoughts about this election?  Let it all out in this special Election Day Open Thread. (Don’t know where to vote? The NYS Board of Elections site will tell you! If you have trouble accessing that site try NYC.gov’s page.)

Comment away!

Cobble Hill Blog’s EJ reports on turnout there.

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  • hezekiah_pierrepont

    I have never seen a more disorganized operation! My wife and I waited at the synagogue on Cadman Plaza for 45 minutes only to be told that we had been directed to the wrong line. Then, after another 15 minute wait in the correct line, the voting machine was balky and required some strange adjustments by the poll workers. Overall, the experience was frustrating, chaotic, and much too crowded. Is there no larger space in the Heights that can be used for a polling place? A gym? An auditorium somewhere?

  • skunky

    360 Adams St was no better. arriving at 6:15 we voted at 7:30. One great court officer was doing her best to keep things organized while her older male colleagues sat around and didn’t do anything to help.

    The fact that three electoral districts have to all vote in the same HALLWAY – not even an auditorium or anything – is just silly. Hopefully this debacle will change some things.

  • TK Small

    I spoke with somebody earlier today and she confirmed your observation about the female court officer. It sounds like she is keeping the whole thing going.

  • Cranky election morning

    PS 8, no better. One person working the table to tell people which voting booth, and lines literally out the door of people waiting.

    I went twice–once near 6 am, once around 7:30–and gave up, not having forty-five minutes to wait in line.

    What do people do if they don’t have flexible middle-class jobs? Voting should not entail sacrifice–the government should make it easy for us to participate in the democratic process, and I am so sour this morning that I may not go back and give it a third shot later today. I mean, really.

  • Hank75

    While I have the utmost respect for the retired and elderly, and hope to be part of both demographics one day, is it discrimination if they should not be allowed to vote before 9 am to allow a shorter wait time for those who need to be at their place of employment in the morning???

  • Alex

    If you’re voting at 209 Joralemon, come knowing your district number.

    If you know it, you may be able to bypass the initial line (which I waited in for an hour at 7 a.m. but it’s much, much longer now) and go straight to the shorter line specific to your district number.

    When I was there, district 106 had the longest wait, 110 and 109 were moderate and 108 had almost nobody.

  • ABC

    Like in every election, better to know your district number so you can skip the line to find out your district number. You can look it up here:


  • http://selfabsorbedboomer.blogspot.com Claude Scales

    Greetings from sunny (yes!) Buffalo, where I’ve been sent as a Squadron Fellow to help the re-election campaign of Sen. Bill Stachowski (D-Erie Co.). Turnout is great here, and things seem to be going smoothly. I voted absentee at the Board of Elections at 345 Adams last Wednesday, and things were a bit disorganized there, though the B of E people were friendly and helpful. The whole process took about one hour. I’m sorry to read of the problems at Brooklyn polling places, and hope everyone gets to cast their ballot without too much inconvenience.

  • Andrew

    At PS 8, the line to check your district number wasn’t so bad at 7:30, but the line to sign the register and vote for the 118th district took about 90 minutes. The 119th district had as many as 4 people in line.

    The polls are open from 6 AM to 9 PM, giving you 15 hours in which to vote today.

  • Cranky

    Yikes. It only took me 15 minutes over at 55 Pierrepoint. No problem at all.

  • nabeguy

    Thanks ABC, Wish I had known that earlier. Waited on 2 lines at PS 8 (one for the card, one for the booth) and was 3 people away from the machine when the person in the booth jammed it. He walked out without pulling the lever back and the attendant, not realizing that, went to reset the machine, which caused the malfunction. He was called back and allowed to re-cast his vote, but after 3 tries, it was clear the machine (Eisenhower-era) wouldn’t accept it, so out come the paper ballots, which took him another 5 minutes to fill out. People really started to get testy when they started handing out ballots to those people who had their own pens. Talk about a failure of Democracy! Excited and glad to have been able to cast my vote, even if it probably won’t be looked at before the next election rolls around.

  • FeiFei

    Voted at P.S. 8 this morning around 8 AM and it took about an hour. If anything, this has inspired me to investigate volunteering for the next election because there weren’t enough people to guide all the voters There were at least six districts in that one gymnasium and the lines were snaking out the door. I went to the front of the line only to find the end of the line back where I started by the front door. Many people did the same thing. And that bake sale in there has got to go – it’s way too crowded to have that table in there. And then district 123’s machine was broken, so we used paper ballots. The woman handing them out asked us to fill it out in line. When my husband asked about privacy, she said, “oh you can go over there…” pointing to a random spot at the back of the room. And then there was another woman taking people out of line to go to some new machine? And there was confusion about whether you needed the voter confirmation card (which we didn’t).

  • mira

    360 Adams was an absolute disgrace. I waited for almost 2 hours in one of 3 or 4 lines for district 107. I could see only about 20-25 people in front of me the entire time. Two booths stood empty as the volunteers at the table stuffed their faces with cookies and cake and carried on conversations. One of the women’s biggest problem was dropping her plastic knife on the ground and being unable to cut her cake. Then, when a supervisor asked her to keep the line moving, she screamed out “I’m only human, don’t rush me.” Meanwhile, voters are missing work to be there waiting in line to look at booths standing empty. Then the 2 volunteers got into a screaming match with one another. I wish I had taken pictures. Makes you feel torn between being there to do your duty as a citizen, but at the same time being appalled to live in a place where people’s biggest problem is which cookie to eat while supposedly doing their job. And when I asked to speak with the supervisor there, she said call the board of elections – which had an hour wait.

  • TK Small

    The “new machine” is a ballot marking device/ electronic voting system which is intended to make it possible for people with disabilities to vote independently and privately. Anyone has the right to use this machine and if one of the poll workers asks any questions about your disability or tries to discourage you whatsoever it is completely illegal.

  • Henry Street

    55 Pierrepont was fine. I was in and out in 25 minutes this morning at around 9AM. There was a line but it all seemed to be moving smoothly.

  • Diane

    I voted at 55 Pierrepont this morning around 9:15. I was in and out in 5 minutes. My husband, with a different last name, had to wait on line for about 10 minutes. But clearly we had it easy. My father-in-law is still on line at PS 8.

  • GHB

    P.S. 8 at around 8:00 was kind of a zoo with different district lines snaking throughout the room. Once on the correct line, it took about 30 or 40 minutes. I always leave home early to allow for the wait. Don’t tell me you don’t have 45 minutes to wait. Leave a little earlier!

  • my2cents

    It took only 45 minutes for me to vote at PS8. The voting machine for the 123rd election district was broken so we needed to do paper ballots. The lines were snaking all over but otherwise orderly. Everything sorted itself out pretty well. It was sort of a good metaphor for our country in that sense. I spied local celebrity Homer Fink entering the polling place on my way out!

  • Cranky election morning

    GHB: I left my home for the first time at 5:45. I then left again with thirty minutes to spare. Enough is enough. People should not have to put aside hours of their day because whoever runs our elections can’t put together an organized, efficient system. I’m not asking for it to be pleasant, just to be possible.

    The likelihood of my trying a third time diminishes with everything I read here.

  • beth

    Also at PS8 in district 123. Disappointed I couldn’t pull the old school lever because of the broken machine. I also wondered how easy it would be for someone to fill out a ballot without signing the voter log — some potential for fraud/confusion there. People were sticking ballots in the box without being verified first.

  • Publius

    Waited 45 minutes to vote. Long line, but everything went smoothly. It’s a privledge to vote that’s greatly appreciated.

    Another level pulled for Barack Hussein Obama.

  • Jen

    Also voted at PS8 around 7:30. 4 people in line for District 119, so the whole thing only took about 15 minutes. I sort of loved the bake sale and coffee amidst the “No eating, no drinking” signs everywhere. I can see the potential for confusion/frustration with disorganized lines for other districts and the antiquated machines, but I can’t complain about my experience this morning.

  • http://erictabone.com Eric

    * Waited on line at 250 Cadman (per the web); told our ED was at 210 Joralemon
    * Waited on line at 210 Joralemon; told first volunteer @ Cadman read book wrong (the evens of our street were @ Joralemon, but the odds are @ Cadman)
    * Went back to 250 Cadman and was allowed to jump the line

    I think it’s time to begin volunteering for presidential election years. (The guy at Cadman told a woman that one of the volunteers is so old and senile that she can only sit and watch, she can’t actually do anything …except take her check for “volunteering”.)

    Obama ’08

  • tvarc

    Started my 2 hour wait for at Adams St for District 107 at 8:40AM. Just got back to the office. District 104 was MUCH worse – minimum 3 hour wait when I left. Although it was unpleasant to wait so long, it was great to see so many people voting.

  • http://N/A Emily

    I didn’t wait too long at 210 Joralemon this morning for District 109 – about 30 minutes all together at 8:30am. The key was definitely knowing my district in advance.

  • LIndaBH

    If you are going to vote at 110 Clark and you live in that building or 75 Henry (Distr 114), you can bypass the long line and go in (and to the table on the left). I was in and out in 15 min (at 7 AM). Still using the old work horse machines, thank goodness! Someone ahead of me yelled “Obama!” as he pulled the lever.

  • nabeguy

    Pretty funny/sad Eric. I commented to someone on the line that when the voting machines are older than the people staffing them, we’re all in trouble! And what is up with District 119? Is it a one-building district? When every other line had 40-50 people on it, ED 119 had 4, as others have attested.

  • beth

    I was wondering where district 125 was — all the lines at PS8 were pretty long but that one was dead.

  • MadeInBrooklyn

    Just voted at Cadman Plaza and waited about 15 minutes — not bad… A change is gonna come!!!

  • ABC

    During the primary, my elderly election ladies were telling people not to vote for Hillary. I think one was wearing an Obama button! hmmmm… methinks that wasn’t cool.

    (was I supposed to vote for Obama/Working Families instead of Obama/Democratic Party?)