Voting in Ohio

Jay Jackman is a guy I’ve know for a couple of years. He was been talking about the need to revive the precinct captain system og Get-Out-The-Vote activities “before it was cool.” He wrote about his experiences working in Ohio on election day: (This is toward the bottom of a long piece…)

“It was at this location that we had our starkest experience with the disenfranchisement resulting from long lines. One of the poll workers put it this way. There were about 2700 registered voters in the three precincts. There were ten voting machines. Under state law, which was then in effect, if there were long lines, than each voter had only five minutes to vote, this meant that the machines could handle twelve voters an hour or 156 voters in the thirteen hours the poles were open. By 5:00 about 1300 people had voted leaving another 1200 or so expected to vote with the polls closing in 2 1/2 hours. The polling supervisor said the math was quite simple. 1200 voters. 10 machines. 120 voters per machine. One voter every five minutes. Twelve voters per hour. That meant that there were ten hours of voters to be served in 2 1/2 hours. She said that she had no doubt that they would be working past midnight, with waits of up to 5 to 7 hours. That is how disenfranchisement worked in Columbus that day.

There was no way that this failure to provide an adequate number of machines was an accident. Everyone knew there would be a massive turnout. Everyone knew how may voters the machines could handle per hour. The arithmetic was really simple. Could you prove this was intentional disenfranchisement? That is what is being documented right now in Ohio to be used in legal challenges.”