Thursday, October 30, 2008

Federal judge rules paper ballots must be available in PA

The following was received from Voter Action and can be found in its entirety at

"Federal Judge Rules That More Emergency Paper Ballots Be Made Available in Pennsylvania When Voters Face Voting Machine Breakdowns"

"PHILADELPHIA, Oct 29, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Federal Judge Harvey S. Bartle III ruled today that emergency paper ballots must be made available when fifty percent or more voting machines fail at polling locations across Pennsylvania. Judge Bartle, who is the chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, issued the ruling in favor of plaintiffs who had argued that voters could be disenfranchised by having to wait hours in line due to voting machine breakdowns...

"The lawsuit followed numerous reports during Pennsylvania's April primary of long lines when electronic voting machines became inoperable at their polling sites. Voters called national election protection hotlines on primary day, including 866-MYVOTE1, reporting that election officials were not providing emergency paper ballots when voting machines malfunctioned. Callers stated that voters were told either to wait in line - sometimes for hours - or to come back later to vote. The reports revealed that many voters left their polling locations without casting their votes."