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Election Problem Log - 2004 to 2009
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VotersUnite! began this problem log with the November 2004 election. It continued its compilation of problems reported in the media by adding news stories about subsequent elections, through 2009. See also: Failures by vendor and Failures by state.
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Date Problem Type State
11/6/2009 Machine malfunction PA ESS Lackawanna County. Flawed ballot programming on the M100 ballot scanners resulted in a failure to count up to 2,452 straight-party votes for two city candidates. Story Archive Story2 Archive2
11/4/2009 Canvass anomalies PA ESS Erie County. Votes from seven iVotronic e-voting machines were not counted. The machines will be taken to the courthouse to tabulate the votes. [The article gave no indication of why they weren't counted.] Story Archive
11/4/2009 Machine malfunction PA ESS Indiana County. M100 optical scanners counted the number of ballots wrong. The number of ballots was an even number in 61 of 69 precincts, suggesting that the scanners counted each sheet of the 2-sheet ballot as a separate ballot. But that explanation doesn't account for a report of 642 ballots cast by 237 registered voters at Cherryhill 1. Even full turnout would have been just 474 pieces of paper. Election workers are still trying to find out what happened. Story Archive
5/21/2009 Machine malfunction PA Bucks County. Problems reporting the results online. “For about an hour Tuesday night one of two servers the county rents through a subcontractor of King of Prussia-based Perfexion went down. Another client of the subcontractor may have left an application running that crowded the system, said chief information officer Don Jacobs. Story Archive
5/21/2009 Poor design PA Danaher Bucks County. Using the Shouptronic 1242 for write-in votes confuses voters. A red flashing button must be pressed to reveal the write-in window. Instead, some voters tried to force the shutter open manually or with a pencil, wrote names on the face of the machine itself or stuck paper slips in the slot. ... In the 2007 primary, machines had to be reset on 37 occasions due to problems with write-in votes. Story Archive
5/21/2009 Poor design PA Diebold Armstrong County. Problems with write-ins on the TSx touch screen machines, and problems getting the machines to accept voted ballots were blamed on voters. Story Archive
5/20/2009 Machine malfunction PA Bucks County. Shouptronic 1242 Voting machines malfunctioned in five towns: Bristol, Wrightstown, Falls, Tullytown and Morrisville. Paper write-in ballots were jammed in two machines, details about the others are unknown. Story Archive
11/5/2008 Machine malfunction PA ESS Centre County. Officials said there was a difference in how one of the new Model 100 optical scanner machines counted the votes in the 26th precinct, as opposed to the actual number of ballots cast. Workers were counting the ballots by hand as of noon. Similar vote count problems with two other State College precincts were corrected early Wednesday. Story Archive
11/4/2008 Check-in problems PA Reported to VotersUnite: I waited over an hour and a half to vote because, while the book was divided into three sections, and there were four women working at the table, only one woman was controlling the book. Another women was checking names off of a list, another was handwriting each voters name on a list and a fourth was handing out tickets that told people they were allowed to vote after they signed in. As I waited in line, I saw many people just drive on through when they saw the line, and because there were so many people they had no place to park.
11/4/2008 Deceptive practices PA Reported to 1-866-OURVOTE: - flyers and calls giving voters serious misinformation, like instructing people to vote on Wednesday. Story
11/4/2008 Machine malfunction PA Diebold Northumberland County. Early Tuesday, at about 7:30 a.m., poll workers discovered that voters who cast a straight-party ticket on the paperless electronic voting machine could not see a summary of the candidates they voted for on the review screen. The machines were impounded. Story Archive Story2
4/22/2008 Ballot printing PA Philadelphia. Backup paper ballots had Clinton's name, but not Obama's. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Sequoia Northampton County. After four people had voted on the Sequoia Advantage paperless e-voting machine, election judge Craig Hynes realized that it had only registered one voter. He had to reset the machine. "We lost three voters and there's no getting them back," explained Hynes, "and at this point we don't even know who they were." Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Delaware County. One of two Danaher Shouptronic 1242 paperless e-voting machines was down at a busy Delaware County polling site. "About 50 people already had voted by 9:15 a.m. at the Temple Israel on Spruce and Bywood Avenue in Upper Darby, which is heavily populated by immigrant and first time voters. Many of those freshly-minted voters had difficulties using the one machine that still functioned."

In South Philadelphia, both voting machines were broken at 4th and Ritner.

One reader wrote: I got to my polling place before 7 a.m.; 2nd ward, 27th division: as the polls were opening, one of two machines for my division was malfunctioning: electrical problem.

In the city's Spring Garden section, home to State Sen. Vincent Fumo, both machines were down at St. Andrews Lithuananian Church at 19th and Wallace. Story Archive

4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Philadelphia. Both Shoutronic machines at 49 ward, 07 division were broken, causing lines up to 1-1/2 hours long. The voter reporting said that during her wait over 100 people left without voting. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Philadelphia. Poll workers think a short power outage may have caused an early issue for about two-dozen voters in Green Tree. According to Debbie Moskala, some voters had to use paper ballots to cast their vote because of a glitch with one of the machines at the Marian Manor senior living facility. When we first started voting this morning, one machine wouldn't work," Moskala told KDKA. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Philadelphia. Both Shouptronic paperless e-voting machines were broken at a polling place near 12th and Grange Streets in the Olney section of Philadelphia. Long lines formed, and many voters reportedly left. "Some voters said they were told the power went down and a technician was needed to get the machines to function." (When both machines are broken in a polling place, voters are allowed to cast a provisional ballot on paper.) Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Bucks County. Shouptronic paperless e-voting machines. "Voters waited in long lines Tuesday morning at the Village of Pennbrook in Falls while poll workers spent an hour and a half working to get two downed machines up and running." In one case, "a voter casting a write-in vote failed to close the write-in door and caused the other machine to jam up," according to Falls Republican Committeeman Kennan Haley. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Philadelphia. Voter Action asked a Philadelphia judge to extend poll hours until 10 p.m. because of delays caused by machine malfunctions. One Richard Brown, of the 5700 block of N. 12th Street in Philadelphia, swore an affidavit that both voting machines at his polling place were broken when he arrived there at 6:55 a.m. It took nearly two hours for the machines to be either repaired or replaced, according to Brown's affidavit, and more than an hour for election officials to produce paper provisional ballots. Roughly 75-100 would-be voters left before that, according to Brown's affidavit. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Machine malfunction PA Danaher State-wide. Voter-protection groups have logged some 750 voter complaints across the state today, including at least 150 about malfunctioning machines.

For example: Voters at a polling place in the 49th Ward near the Fern Rock station had to wait two hours because of machine malfunctions, said Kathryn Bookvar, an attorney with the Advancement Project, based in Washington, who was in Philadelphia to monitor the election. Machine problems also were reported in West Oak Lane; Upper Darby, Delaware County, and Elkins Park, Montgomery County. Story Archive

4/22/2008 Malfeasance PA Philadelphia. In violation of the law, a sample ballot urging voters to support Hillary Clinton, Bob Brady, John Dougherty and William F. Keller was handed to voters inside the polling place at First Ward, 8th Division. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Poor design PA Sequoia Northampton County. Confusing ballot on the Sequoia Advantage. Delegates under the Democratic Presidential candidates are listed in tiny print AND don't necessarily support the candidate they are listed under. One voter reports: "In the lightest italic, smallest print under the delegates .... It states who they are committed to. And it is the tiniest print in the whole space, and they're mixed. Had I not read the sample ballot, I wouldn't have known. I would've voted for all the wrong people," Story Archive
4/22/2008 Provisional ballots PA Philadelphia. Many reports of voters who switched parties and whose names did not appear on the rolls of the new party. In some instances, voters whose names were missing were not being offered provisional ballots. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Registration errors PA Philadelphia & Montgomery Counties. Longtime Democrats in both Philadelphia and Lower Merion Township who arrive at their polling places to find that they are registered in the poll book as Independents. Independents can only vote on ballot questions, not for presidential primary candidates. Story Archive
4/22/2008 Registration errors PA Philadelphia. "Numerous" registration snafus were reported to the Committee of Seventy, said its election coordinator John David. The bulk of those complaints have come from voters who switched parties and whose names did not appear on the rolls of the new party. The city has been inundated with calls, said David, adding: "It's swamping the voter-registration office." Story Archive
4/22/2008 Voter intimidation PA A constable working the Bethesda Presbyterian Church polling place was allegedly not letting supporters of Obama inside to vote and ordering those there to leave. A court order for City Ward 13, District 8 told election officials there to "refrain from discouraging or prohibiting, in any way, any elector from entering the polling place." Story Archive
11/7/2007 Machine malfunction PA Hart InterCivic Blair County. eSlate voting machines weren't accepting votes. It took most of the day to resolve the programming problem. Story Archive
11/6/2007 Machine malfunction PA Hart InterCivic Bedford County. None of the eScan optical scanning machines were working at any of the polling places. "Election commissioner Peg Koenig planned to visit all 40 precincts in the county to reprogram machines." Story Archive
6/19/2007 Machine malfunction PA Hart InterCivic Bedford County. "Peg Koenig, director of elections in Bedford County, said there was a memory card problem in voting machines on Election Day. Koenig said the Northern Bedford County School District had a massive write-in campaign that was much larger than expected. She said the memory cards in the e-scan voting machines became so full that the machines spit the ballots out." Commissioner Mike Shaffer lost the Republican primary by eight votes to Michael Herline. The entire Republican primary election results will be recounted. The article suggests that the ballots will be recounted by machine. Story Archive
5/30/2007 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Monroe County. Malfunctions and possible fraud. At the Coolbaugh 3 polling place, one of the machines was unlocked when it was inspected at the start of election day but it was used anyway. Danaher e-voting machine displayed zeros for totals at the end of day, and a technician had to be called in. Two of the five machines were inoperable at some point. Story Archive
5/16/2007 Late counting PA ESS Beaver County. Complicated procedures with three activator devices. Poll worker didn't close the polls and votes from the iVotronics weren't included in the initial results. Story Archive
5/16/2007 Machine malfunction PA ESS Luzerne County. Wrong ballots on the iVotronic. The candidates in Region 2 appeared on the Region 3 ballot and the candidates in Region 3 appeared on the Region 2 ballot, according to Leonard Piazza, director of the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections. “Due to an oversight we had the wrong ballots on those machines,” Piazza said. Story Archive
5/16/2007 Machine malfunction PA Hart InterCivic Blair County. eSlate e-voting machines. "Palmer Brown went to vote early Tuesday at the Catfish District of Blair Township, the Reservoir Church, the voting machines were not working. The only thing that came up when he tried to cast his ballot was 'old election data.' " Story Archive
5/16/2007 Machine malfunction PA AVS Lackawanna County. Officials can't retrieve vote data from the USB devices. "By Wednesday afternoon, officials had checked the USBs from Scranton’s 48 districts; only two contained no data, according to Cathy Hardaway, county director of voter education." Story Archive
5/16/2007 Machine malfunction PA ESS Westmoreland County. Poll workers in several precincts had trouble printing zero tapes on the iVotronics. Zero tapes show that no votes have been cast yet -- that the ballot box is empty. Election Bureau Director Jim Montini said the zero tapes could be printed any time before the polls close. Story Archive
5/16/2007 Machine malfunction PA ESS Allegheny County. Various problems with the iVotronic touch screens: undefined malfunctions turned voters away from at least one polling place; write-in feature either didn't work or was unintuitive; voters complained that the machines didn't allow them to undervote in races where they could vote for more than one candidate; some said the machine made them start over. Story Archive
5/16/2007 Too few machines PA ESS McKean County. Long lines with low turnout on the iVotronic touch screen. "voters experienced long waits at polling locations - the voter turnout was 26.11 percent, according to Director of Elections Judy Ordiway." Story Archive
5/15/2007 Machine malfunction PA Danaher Philadelphia. Alicia Shubert/Mantua tells us, "The voting machines aren't working. I've been waiting all week, all month, all year - just to get my opinion said and I haven't been able to do so. And I'm very upset with this." The problem at the polling place in Mantua? Both available voting machines were broken. Election Judge Veronica Outlaw-Drummond said, "We have turned away maybe 15 or 20 people already." And that was at around 9 a.m.! Story Archive
5/15/2007 Machine malfunction PA ESS Centre County. Computer malfunction took down all the iVotronics at one polling site for two hours. Story Archive
11/14/2006 Malfeasance PA ESS Centre County. Office of Elections told poll workes to begin voting on two machines without printing the zero tapes that show no votes are already cast, because the iVotronic that prints the zero tapes was not working. Story Archive
Records: 1-40 of 88
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