Tuesday, June 6, 2006

Early Voting Problems in San Joaquin

The Stockton Record published this article about polling place problems in the county this morning:

Early Voting Problems in San Joaquin

The Record
Published Tuesday, Jun 6, 2006

A variety of problems at polling places throughout San Joaquin County hampered early voting efforts in Tuesday's primary election.

People were sent away without casting their ballots in Stockton, Lodi and Morada and poll workers did not show up to staff other precincts, including some in Weston Ranch.

At Lodi Fire Station No. 3, voters weren't allowed to begin casting ballots until close to 10 a.m. Polls were supposed to open at 7 a.m.

Elsewhere, San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters Debbie Hench said the Diebold touchscreen voting machines seemed to be working fine, but some poll workers were having trouble getting them set up.

A team of 415 inspectors was available for deployment to precincts where problems cropped up. But even that crew was short-handed after some unexpected departures.

"Eight of them quit between 5 and 8 p.m. last night," Hench said. "I have no idea why."

Hench said her staff trained poll workers to not let voters "just leave" if there were problems.

"Unfortunately, that message didn't get through to everyone," Hench said. "We're trying to get the problems straightened out as soon as possible."

Follow recordnet.com for more updates throughout the day.

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