Never too early to vote…

Today was my first experience with “early” voting – I have always voted in person on Election Day. Those who have been here way too long may remember that into 2012, the city of Chicago threw my vote away (probably). Having registered at the DMV with “motor voter”, the DMV had my correct address – however the Chicago Board of elections omitted the apartment number and the fine Postal Service automatically returned any mail that was missing the apartment number. Curiously, I did get the mail telling me that my mailing address was invalid. The result was I had to vote on a provisional ballot, after I called Springfield to raise holy hell with the state board of elections. But given that Chicago and the demeanor of the voting precinct staff, I’m confident it went straight to the dumpster, probably replaced by some ballot from a dead person.

So if you have not have the experience, here’s what it was like today. I could have requested an absentee ballot, they also have a provision for for voting from your car if you have trouble walking (which would have been a good choice for me). My research paid off – I arrived at 12:45 PM – after the lunch rush but before the afternoon rush. There were only about five people in front of me in line. At 1 PM, the line was back to 20 people.

As I discovered this morning, this library is actually closed for renovation for the next year. They are spending $8 million in bond money to add 2000 ft.² and a snack bar. The voting occurred in the lobby, such as it is.

Because this is countywide and not precinct based, I was pointed to a man with a laptop sitting at a table – he asked for my name; I gave him my name and my address, then he asked me for my address. Since the federal judge decided the state cannot ask for ID, that was it. We were on the honor system. He printed off a small label about 2 x 3″ that had my name and address, and he asked me to check to make sure that really was me. After I agreed, the label was attached to the ballot card, which most importantly said which version of the ballot I should get.

Once that was completed, they pointed me towards the voting machine area. Since there are probably 150 different versions of the ballot depending on the judges, House District, etc. they had to punch in my special ballot version number so that I would be given the correct choices. As I pressed each button, a printer which I could see showed my selection. After going through all of the pages and verifying my choices, I pressed “make it so!” And the printer spewed out barcodes, the 2016 equivalent of 80 column Hollerith punchcards with hanging chads. Did the barcode match what I actually chose? No idea. I guess I just have to trust something. So in theory they could run the paper tape through and recount the votes.

Any questions?

This entry was posted in 2016 election. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Never too early to vote…

  1. briand75 says:

    Jaymar – I will buy you hamburger on Tuesday if you vote today! 🙂

  2. JayMar says:

    I still refuse to vote, for the first time in my life. Either that, or I might write-in Mickey Mouse, I trust him a lot, I just wish he would have a manly voice but it fit today’s narrative.

  3. Fred Stiening says:

    In 2012, about 220,000 people voted early. Democrats forced the extra early days of voting in the 10 places. The voting seems substantially higher, although the city has gained population and it isn’t straight forward to compare

  4. briand75 says:

    Heard of a woman in TX who went to the voting machine and selected a straight Republican ticket. When she checked the second page, she noted that Hillary was selected. She tried to fix it – no luck. She called a poll worker who tried to fix it – no luck. They went and got a poll judge who fixed it in seconds.

    Interesting, eh?

  5. Fred Stiening says:

    Mike Pence’s plane slid off the runway at LaGuardia in bad weather. Nobody hurt, but a close call…

    It was really windy today here in NC. Winter has arrived.

Leave a Reply