blogenlust
10.18.2004

Democracy is Hard Work


How is this STILL possible!!!???
In Florida, the process was far from seamless. In Broward County, north of Miami, supervisor of elections Brenda Snipes said a computer connection went down, preventing nine ballot stations from accessing a database to find out which one of the county's 152 different ballot styles each voter should have. "It's a hiccup, it's a bit more than a hiccup," Snipes told the Sun-Sentinel newspaper. In Orlando, home to the Disney World theme parks, people were kept waiting for more than two hours by a combination of long lines and computer malfunctions that prevented poll workers from verifying the names and addresses of voters. In Miami-Dade, poll workers appeared overwhelmed by the hundreds brought to the government center by a rally of trade unions, voter activists and Democrats, and the line to cast an early ballot moved achingly slowly. "This is unusual," said election official Javier Gonzalez, pointing to the long line. Patience quickly began to run thin. "They've got four people to register hundreds," said John Simon, a Republican turned Democrat who wanted to pick up an absentee ballot but decided after waiting for two hours that he might as well cast an early vote. Voting rights activists and Democrats have been highly critical of the state's elections division, run by Glenda Hood, a Republican appointed by the president's brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. A string of lawsuits on issues such as the lack of a paper trail for touch-screen systems are before the courts.
No, it's not a hiccup, its broken democracy. And democracy is hard to do.