I skipped the primaries, so I didn’t experience the new electronic voting machines until today when I went to School 30 to carry out my democratic duty.
Everybody seems to hate these machines. During the September primaries, they were an unqualified disaster. Forty-four county Board of Elections across the state found problems with them. That’s a bad beginning– and I got a feeling the final assessment for today’s general election won’t be much better.
Most of the complaints I’ve been hearing about the machines came true with me, too. The good news is that the one I used didn’t break down.
Voting on one these things is akin to filling out a Lotto card because you use a pen to fill in circles for whoever it is you’re voting for. Actually, that;s But an insult to the lottery because at least with Pick 6, you have one in a zillion chance of making some money.
I admit I didn’t know what I was doing at first. In fact, the poll watcher yelled at me when I tried to rip a ballot off a tablet of ballots. He gave me a quick rundown and told me to go over to the voting stations, which– yes, it’s true– are set up on rickety tables that jiggle every time you put pen to paper. I felt like I was exposed to passersby, having none of the privacy of the old-fashioned voting machines with curtains.
When I was done, a lady working at the site directed me to one of the scanners. But it was the wrong one. The guy at my district table yelled at me again.
When I left the table, something crashed to the floor and shattered. I think it was one of the cheap lamps they attached to the voting station. I couldn’t figure out if I had caused the accident or not, Maybe I bumped into the table or something. I don’t know.
Anyway, I walked over to the guy with my completed ballot. He was a nice guy, don’t get me wrong. But he took the ballot and placed in the scanner. He could’ve easily seen how I voted.
If had looked carefully, he could’ve seen that I wrote my own name for the U.S. Senate race between Chuck Schumer and Jay Townsend. The square boxes for write-in votes were just a little bigger than the size of a postage stamp.