Illinois Election-Problems Clearinghouse

Sponsored by the Illinois Illinois Ballot Integrity Project, a non-partisan civic group.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Welcome to the Illinois Election-Problems Clearinghouse!

February 27 will be the third election in which Chicago and Cook County will depend on electronic voting machines. The first two elections were so stricken with problems that even the national media took notice, and Chicago and Cook County suspended payments to the voting-machine vendor. Will this month's election be "strike three"?

In the face of such expected setbacks, we again offer this blog--
1) To help citizens effectively route their reports of election problems.
2) To collect and preserve citizens' writeups of problems.
3) To allow each citizen to publish his/her writeup on the Internet--
instantly, word for word. (No equivalent service is offered elsewhere.)

So, jump right in! Use the links below to--
Call in a problem that needs immediate attention.
Read the reports. (Click here, or just scroll down.)
Post a written report (as a "comment").
Publish audio or video record of a problem.
Review the archived reports from March 2006 and November 2006.
Contact the clearinghouse moderator.

If current reports aren't easily viewable here, try this alternate page.

Thanks for participating. And keep checking back!


  • At 6:39 AM, Roy Lipscomb said…

    Here are the Posting Guidelines:
    * Very long reports are OK.
    * Please specify--
       1) your county,
       2) your town,
       3) your ward,
       4) the date and time of occurrence.
    * Your name and precinct are desirable, but optional.
    * You may use "Anonymous" as your identity.
    * Check back later for responses.


  • At 12:12 AM, Anonymous said…

    Hi, I was an election judge today in Chicago, Ward 33, precinct 14, sharing the polling place with precinct 26. Here were some of the problems and observations relevant to problems with the election system--

    1. The polling place was switched to a new location, 1/2 block from the old one, without prior notification to some or all of the judges let alone the voters. Some voters did notice a sign put up at the old place some time after the polls opened, and came to the new location. I don't know for fact that no one received notification in the mail, but I know I and at least some other judges did not. At 5 a.m. I noticed some people bunched up down the otherwise empty street, and checked out to see if that was a polling place. It turned out to be where 14 and 26 were moved.

    2. One voter, who said she had voted several times in the same precinct, found that her name had disappeared from the poll book. A call to Election Central did not solve the mystery. She was given a provisional ballot.

    3. The Election Workers handbook, p. 34, says to ask for a voter's complete Social Security number in a certain circumstance (even though there is a law suit against the Board of Elections revealing Social Security numbers). At least the use of Social Security numbers on the ballot applications that identify people coming in to vote are restricted to the last four digits only.

    4. One of the pollwatchers was touching voting materials until he was told a couple of times not to do that any more. Also poll workers outside went inside the cones at least a few times to illegally electioneer, but finally, for the most part at least, appeared to follow the guidelines after being told and warned.

    5. One plug came out of the back of the Sequoia ballot counter/voter card activator machine twice. Because of battery back-up, this caused no harm.

    6. A Sequoia tech came by in the morning to see how the machines were doing. They were doing fine at that time. This was the first time a Sequoia tech had ever come by for a checkup in the last two elections.

    7. A Coke truck parked for about 10-15 minutes in the no parking/handicapped zone for the voting, with the driver nowhere in sight.

    8. One voter's card for the Sequoia touch screen machine was rejected by the machine before his voting was started, and would not take it even after repeated tries. Whether the card was clear, as the HAAT machine said it was, or there was some other problem was not clarified. But the touch screen machine would still not accept the card even after the all clear from the HAAT. So the voter switched to an opti-scan machine. The directions from Election Central were to reboot the machine. I think it was used after that, tho I am not really sure, but, if it was, it was with no further problem.--Neal Resnikoff

  • At 12:52 PM, Anonymous said…

    I reported the election problems from Ward 49, 14, 25 and 27 precincts, but it made little difference.

    How was Daley declared reelected before ballots were counted? When he announced, the 25th precinct had not even transmitted, because a judge turned the machine off before votes were consolidated and counted. They turned it back on, but could not consolidate or transmit. Precincts 14 and 27 had printed the total tapes, but not yet left for the Receiving Station.

    Hoope someone independent and impartial watches the runoffs.

    I was a pollwatcher and was fortunate to be persistent enough to remind the judges in the 14th precinct that they should not be handling voters' ballot cards for them and assisting them with voting (except to get them set up on machines) unless they filled out an affidavit.

    The ballot was not secret in the 14th for a period of time.

    One Touchscren did not work for 3 voters. I finally asked the PPA to check it. Found out there was a power problem and the machine was running off of battery power, but it was just not enough. The problem was solved when the machine was moved.

    But what if I had not asked. Had not been there.

  • At 12:32 PM, Anonymous said…

    As an EM judge in Cicero, I encouraged people to use the paper ballots today. I also explained to some other judges about Ohio and Florida, etc. and promoted HCPB.

    No problems during the day. But after we consolidated data and transmitted ok / "success" on tape, and packed all equipment and documents, downtown called to ask us to re-transmit because they didn't receive our memory pack from the optical scanner.

    We managed to get them to let us bring in the stuff to the receiving station with a note with the pack, as described in the manual regarding failures after tries.


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