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Election Day 2016

Oh. My. God. We made it to Election Day. Batten the hatches; the final 24 hours of this general election season are going to be a doozy.

Resources for you if you haven’t already voted early or by absentee ballot:

And last but not least, HuffPo’s Elise Foley’s list of poll closing and bar closing times by state. Yeoman’s work here.

This is an open thread, but it’s open for election content only. Spare your family, friends and neighbors and dump here instead about your voting experience.

UPDATE — 10:45 AM EST —
Interesting resource: Google Trends voting related searches — a tool built by Google News Lab and Pitch Interactive for ProPublica’s Electionland coverage.

I’m surprised at the location of certain searches, like concentrations of Long Lines in a predominantly white rural small city, and Voter Intimidation in a nearly all-white town. Wonder if the latter is a case where the search location isn’t really in that town but within the ISP neighboring a minority-majority city.

Blogger since 2002, political activist since 2003, geek since birth. Opinions informed by mixed-race, multi-ethnic, cis-female condition, further shaped by kind friends of all persuasions. Sci-tech frenemy, wannabe artist, decent cook, determined author, successful troublemaker. Mother of invention and two excessively smart-assed young adult kids. Attended School of Hard Knocks; Rather Unfortunate Smallish Private Business School in Midwest; Affordable Mid-State Community College w/evening classes. Self-employed at Tiny Consulting Business; previously at Large-ish Chemical Company with HQ in Midwest in multiple marginalizing corporate drone roles, and at Rather Big IT Service Provider as a project manager, preceded by a motley assortment of gigs before the gig economy was a thing. Blogging experience includes a personal blog at the original blogs.salon.com, managing editor for a state-based news site, and a stint at Firedoglake before landing here at emptywheel as technology’s less-virginal-but-still-accursed Cassandra.
31 replies
  1. bloopie2 says:

    Voted absentee last month, as my commute pretty much makes it impossible to get to the polls. Piece of cake. Highly recommended, just check the box on the absentee ballot application that says you will be out of town on the day of the election.
    PS thanks for running your thread/posts all this time, it’s always informative.

    • rugger9 says:

      I went to early voting for the ambience of the registrar’s office.  Long lines two weeks ago, which I consider to be a good thing.  As a Cold War vet, I did not spend those lovely days overseas with bad hours and lousy food (and only one beer call) for eligible voters to sit on their couch.  I don’t particularly care who / what you vote for as long as it’s your honest vote.

      Even though the USN is officially “dry” if you’ve been at sea for 45 days straight (we hit 54) you get two beers.  Ours was Foster’s.  Also, the only good use for UHT milk is to change the color of your coffee.  Variety y’know.

  2. laura says:

    I voted on the 22nd at home with spouse and little brother.
    The CA ballot was chock full of good and counter-good propositions. Voted for legal weed, and the end of the death penalty and single use plastic bags and against statewide vote on infrastructure projects.
    Now build that high speed rail already!

  3. bmaz says:

    I really miss the visceral feeling of going to the live polls. But the hassle isn’t worth it. I marked and returned my mail ballot on October 15. Took all of 5-7 minutes. Gotta love that.

    • Peterr says:

      I just got done voting, standing in line at the local elementary school. Voting was in the library, but the line went out the library, down the hall, turn the corner, down another hall, out the doors, and stretched along the sidewalk in front of the school. All in all, it took a little more than an hour. The election judge walking the line to answer questions said that it had been heavy all day, but had tapered off a bit about the time I arrived.

      As I left, the line was longer than it was when I got there an hour or so earlier. I expect it to only get longer, right up until 7pm when they cut the line off.

      In addition to the interest in the presidential race (with Trump expected to win rather easily), there’s lots of interest in the other statewide races which are much closer and have Dems leading in most of the pre-election polls. The tightest is for governor, but the latest senate poll has Roy “the Lobbyists’ Friend” Blunt losing to up and coming Jason Kander — a nice result if it pans out that way. There’s also a big campaign spending limit constitutional amendment on the ballot which has gotten a lot of attention but no public polling was done on it that I’ve seen, as well as a very popular “keep the tax” proposition that funds state parks and services for hunters and anglers. (The tax has to be renewed every X years, and this is one of those years.)

      All in all, a good day for democracy so far in MO.

  4. Rayne says:

    Not going to the polls until early afternoon — after lunch but before school lets out.  By then the poll workers will be in a groove, able to chat, and I’ll still have a feel for which way my precinct is going. I don’t have a good feeling for it, though; my bedroom-community middle-class municipality in flyover country usually votes 65-70% GOP. Demographics have changed as neighboring city has slowly collapsed from loss of manufacturing base, but the semi-rural perimeter remains very white, very conservative.

    In spite of the icky feeling of voting in opposition to the occupying force, I prefer to go to the polls in person so I can get some feedback from workers I won’t find online.

    Interesting resource: Google Trends voting related searches — a tool built by Google News Lab and Pitch Interactive for ProPublica’s Electionland coverage.

    I’m surprised at the location of certain searches, like concentrations of Long Lines in a predominantly white rural small city, and Voter Intimidation in a nearly all-white town. Wonder if the latter is a case where the search location isn’t really in that town but within the ISP neighboring a minority-majority city.

    I think I’ll copy this resource bit and my observation and add it to the post.

    Anybody else found any interesting voting-related resources?

  5. TarheelDem says:

    Voted 1st day of early voting.  Got in line 9am; out at 10:30am.  Number 330 voted that day in that precinct.  Democratic BOE;  at a library; space filled with voting booths for computer-read paper ballots.  One of the two reliably blue counties in NC.

    Only Libertarian slate as third party and only for state and national office.  Everything else was Dem-Rep or “nonpartisan” (unbranded Dem-Rep).

  6. bloopie2 says:

    I had to go to the car repair place this morning.  Fox News on the TV in the waiting room.  Everyone talking about their pickup trucks.  Mention “Trump is a pervert” and you get “You should see what Obama has done”.  Yikes.  We really do live in two different worlds.  (Note, it’s the best car repair place I’ve ever been to, great, nicest people, excellent work, they know me and will go the extra mile for me, etc.  So, never changing from there.  Still …)

  7. lefty665 says:

    Line at around 11 this morning, and turnout close to 50% already. Very unusual, but in this mostly rural county, it means the Repubs and Teabaggers are energized. They figure when they hit 70% locally they win statewide. The action in Virginia is the ‘burbs around D.C.  A big blue turnout there will carry the state. Sunny, balmy weather facilitates that.  Voted Green, beliefs over fears, second non Dem presidential vote since HHH.

  8. SteveInNC says:

    Voted on my way to work this morning (about 7 am).  Other people there, but no lines.  Paper ballots with bubbles to mark in, so theoretically a paper trail.  Took an exit poll on the way out.  (Raleigh, NC)

  9. Bay State Librul says:

    I voted early based on Mass’s new law. Easy and simple.

    Fans are going nuts around the “Bill sends a letter to Donald” furor

    “Congratulations on a tremendous campaign. You have dealt with an unbelievable slanted and negative media and have come out beautifully. You’ve proved to be the ultimate competitor and fighter. Your leadership is amazing. I have always had tremendous respect for you, but the toughness and perseverance you have displayed over the past year is remarkable. Hopefully tomorrow’s elections results will give the opportunity to Make America Great Again. Best wishes for great results tomorrow, Bill Belichick.”

    Good coach, bad and arrogant personality, dickhead for penning that nonsense.

  10. P J Evans says:

    I walked up the street to the middle school where my precinct normally votes, a little after 8am, during the pre-work rush. Had to wait in line for the ballot, and a few more minutes for a booth to open up. I had my sample ballot already marked, so it didn’t take long. One guy came in his work vehicle: a tow truck.

    The workers had a 4 or 5-page additional list of voters who were newly registered, but people were still getting provisional ballots. They expect a big day. (In 20078, I went in after work and had to wait in line for more than half an hour just to get a ballot.)

  11. P J Evans says:

    laura says: November 8, 2016 at 9:44 am

    You and me both. I looked at the addresses of the for/against groups first: that tells you a lot about which way to go.

  12. bloopie2 says:

     
    First, most every word of Belichick’s statement could have been said about Hillary; toughness, leadership, drive, fight the media, etc.  Second, those aren’t significant reasons to elect a President; policies are.  What a jerk.  Who the hell wants to root for his team again?  The Patriot players ought to kneel in protest, on Sunday.

  13. Peterr says:

    Been in line for 45 minutes, and it will probably be another 45 before I get to the front and can vote. Never seen lines like this in 10 years of voting at this site. Between the presidential race and two very very close state races (government and senator), plus other interesting downticket races, there’s lots of interest. There is also a big campaign contributions limits constitutional amendment on the ballot.

  14. bloopie2 says:

    Next time some woman complains about Hilary running for President, remind her that it was the damn liberals gave women the right to vote, ask her if she thinks that was the right decision, and ask her if she feels she is intelligent enough to vote.

  15. emptywheel says:

    I got scheduled to protect the vote at my own voting location (technically, I took the other precinct at my location, but I mostly prowled around trying to cut down the line).

    Our lines at opening were 40 minutes the small precinct, just north of 1.5 the large precinct. Once the line on the small side dissipated the big side poached some booths from there, though that was still where the holdup was. By the time I got done and got in line, they had added another 2 poll booths. Also by the time I got there, two observers from the Secretary of State’s office were there, for at least 2 hours (for the whole time I was in line, which was an hour).

    We lost two voters, that I know of: a woman in the big precinct who couldn’t wait. And a woman in the small one that was sure she had registered at the “welfare” office, but was not shown as registered. I fought to make the precinct judge in the small district offer her a provisional, which she had never done before. By the time she figured that out, the woman had left (though I forwarded her name to the Dems). One other guy cast a provisional before I left but I wasn’t handling that; I guess I should count him as a lost voter too.

    We had two blind voters while I was there (there’s a seeing impaired NGO in the neighborhood). One guy did so at a regular booth with help from two poll workers. Not sure how the other voted. Otherwise, the machine for disabled voters was not used.

    When I left the small precinct at 12, their total was about 40% of 2012 turnout (which voted Obama 72%), so that precinct should surpass 2012 numbers (though there are a few more apartment buildings in the precinct). When I voted in the big precinct an hour later, our total was closer to 33% of 2012 turnout (which voted Obama 76%). I expect that side to stay open at least an hour and a half past close, maybe two, which should bring it to matching 2012 turnout, but it won’t surpass it by much at this pace. The voters skewed younger than I’m used to (it was my first presidential vote here), like they did in the primary.

    Our biggest concern is that voters at the next precinct location over (another church, serving a the area with most of the homeless services downtown; there are 3 churches all within 5 blocks that serve much of downtown and surrounding areas) wasn’t up and running. We had several coming over to our location trying to figure out where to vote. The GOP precinct head walked over there to figure out what was happening.

    About an hour after I got home I got a text saying more provisional ballots were going out, which has me worried that more people were stuck on provisionals after I left.

    Best part of the day were the staffers (and volunteers) at the church we were at. They were serving donut holes and coffee all day, and I recruited them to watch out for disabled voters so we could find them a seat while the line inched forward (challengers are not supposed to talk to voters, though of course I was chatting up my neighbors when they came in).

    • lefty665 says:

      Neat. Being engaged as part of the process on election day feels pretty good. Voting is fundamental, but working at the polls puts you right there on the front lines of democracy.

      I enjoyed years as a District chair spending election days cruising precinct polling places, solving problems, picking up signs and vote totals at the end of the day. It was sort of startling and then thrilling to show up at the first polling place before dawn to a line of people waiting for the doors to open so they could vote before going to work.  Same in the evening as folks straggled in after dark to vote on the way home.

    • bmaz says:

      I am on an emergency lawyers list and nary a peep. Some long lines, few random machine malfunctions, but all in all a surprisingly good election day in Maricopa County.

      • lefty665 says:

        Sounds like that’s the way it’s been in most of the country, and just the way we like it.

        Also looking like the Repubs came home and Trump excited some people. That’ll be a whole different set of fears than I’d been expecting for the next four years.

        • bmaz says:

          Heh, yeah, me too. Our fears may be differently based, but there is room for a LOT of them right now. Ooof.

          • lefty665 says:

            I expect they’re fairly similar, remember I don’t have any use for either of them.  That Trump’s mentor was Roy Cohn is a big one, but like you, it’s just one among many. I do think he’s a little less likely to get us into a neocon driven nuclear war.

            • lefty665 says:

              Trump ran to the left of Hillary on several issues, trade, SS, Medicare and foreign policy among them, so it ain’t all bad, just mostly.  He’s way out of step with the right wingers and has lots of scores to settle within the party. That will at least be fun to watch.

              Dems have been on an 8 year slide from Pres and veto proof houses of Congress to holding none of them. Maybe this will spark a donnybrook in the party to ditch the right wing, DLC, Clinton, corporate, repub wanna be elites and get back to roots. Roots are the New Deal and being the party of everyday citizens.  Dems gotta believe in something more than sucking up to wall street. 90% of the country has not had a real raise since 1978, saw their equity used as foam for the runway for the banks after 2008, and has just said enough of this shit. Stand for something Dems, run the corrupt, greedy, blindly ambitious neolib elites out and build a real party with a heart, a conscience and a brain that is dedicated to helping the people of America. That is the road back to a majority, don’t cede it to Trump.

  16. dakine01 says:

    I voted this morning in Lexington, KY.  I had a couple of people ahead of me to sign-in then about 10 in line before I got to the booth.  All together, it took about 15 minutes time from entering to leaving (I got there about 7:30AM – poll hours in Kentucky are 6AM to 6PM local time)

  17. anon says:

    I live in Oregon where all ballots are supposedly mailed.  At my current address of the last three years my ballot somehow fails to arrive more often the not.  So any time I want to vote I have to take a day off, even for primaries, and go to the county election office to get a replacement ballot.  If I don’t, then they de register me for the next election.  Vote by mail is the worst.  Give me early voting any day. Oregon loves to try every bad idea that everyone else has the sense to avoid. Dumbest place I have ever lived, and I’ve lived in DC and Texas and California.

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