Democrats Report Massive Voting Problems in New York Primary

NY Polling Place Stephanie Keith Getty
Stephanie/Keith Getty

Voters on the Democratic side of the 2016 New York primary are flooding social media with complaints about the voting system.

Accusations abound of polling errors and names not being on voting lists as Hillary Clinton jumped out to an early lead Tuesday night in her fight against Bernie Sanders. But the results could still be challenged.

One user complained on social media “Asked about provisional ballots and she said they were not possible” with others responding: “they offered me a provisional today when they were having trouble finding my name (everything got fucked when i changed from my maiden to my married)… it is in fact possible”. She added: “No one knows wth is going on” and “they’re not telling volunteers at polling stations the right stuff”.

Another post said: “Just called my local BoE and the lady literally laughed and said ‘I would be the first to know, and no, you cannot vote”.

Friends responded: “What a jerk” and “I guess they don’t really want the young to vote after all”.

Users posted messages from Black Lives Matter exile Shaun King, who urged “New York!! Vote no matter what. If they say you aren’t listed, use the provisional ballot”.

Lastly, a user reported “MAJOR issues at the St. Francis Church in Williamsburg. Many people are not in their books. If you’ve experienced this today, make sure you fill out a provisional ballot and email and tell them about your issue. Your ballot will still count tonight”.

New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer declared that he will conduct an official audit of the city’s Board of Elections after receiving numerous complaints.

Stringer released a statement Tuesday afternoon casting doubt on the integrity of the New York primary on both sides of the aisle and indicting the Board of Elections (BOE):

There is nothing more sacred in our nation than the right to vote, yet election after election, reports come in of people who were inexplicably purged from the polls, told to vote at the wrong location or unable to get in to their polling site. The people of New York City have lost confidence that the Board of Elections can effectively administer elections and we intend to find out why the BOE is so consistently disorganized, chaotic and inefficient.

Stringer also reportedly wrote a letter to the executive director of BOE listing complaints that he has received from voters, including reports of an indefinitely closed polling station in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

For his part, the BOE executive director said, “We’re just not seeing it,” referring to major systemic problems all over the city Tuesday.