McCain warns of 'irregularities' in battleground states; experts say problems have been routineTerry Smith in The Dallas Morning News, November 04, 2008
McCain warns of 'irregularities' in battleground states; experts say problems have been routine
Tue, Nov 04, 2008
John McCain's campaign has issued a warning about alleged voting problems in New Hampshire, Florida and Pennsylvania -- all states key to his victory strategy.
The McCain-Palin campaign is committed to ensuring that every qualified voter has the opportunity to vote and that all lawfully cast ballots are not cancelled out by fraudulent votes. Given that four states in the 2004 Presidential Election were decided by 1 percent or less, the McCain-Palin Campaign believes there should be a zero-tolerance policy for voter fraud and voter intimidation. Through a combination of news accounts and first-hand reports, the following cases of voter irregularities have been documented:
But while thousands of reports by frustrated voters and others have been logged across the country, experts have said the problems reported today have been minor.
"Since 2000, of course, we have much more increased scrutiny of election problems," Fordham Law Professor Terry Smith told The News. "But so far what we have seen today are long lines and we're seeing mechanical glitches -- these problems are going to occur no matter what technology we use to vote. But what we haven't heard news of is the kind of voter suppression attempts that we saw in 2000 and 2004. That's the serious stuff, the partisan voter suppression."
That doesn't appear to be happening, Professor Smith said, at least not to the degree that Democrats alleged it happened in 2004 and 2000.
Other problems like long lines in Pennsylvania and other states that don't have early voting -- are predictable. There are also problems reported in Ohio, Virginia, and Florida, though reports vary on their significance. The Palm Beach Post, for instance, says voting in the Sunshine State is proceeding smoothly.
The ugly reality appears to be that every election brings big problems -- we just care more about them when the results are close. We'll keep watching as the votes come in.