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On a second term!Thank you to all our partners, state directors and staff for all their hard work this year re-electing our President.
Marriage Equality Laws are on the ballot in 4 states this election cycle, three of which are America Votes states. Maine, Minnesota, and Washington each have ballot measures that would defend equality for all individuals. Our partners have been working hard on these measures and we pleased to announce that in Maine and Maryland that marriage equality has passed. We hope we’re able to announce the same results in Minnesota and Washington as well.
Republicans have had a bad case of “foot in mouth” disease on sensitive topics such as a woman’s right to choose, especially in the circumstances of rape. From the top of the ticket all the way down to candidates running for state office, the Republican Party has consistently been saying that they are against abortion in all cases because the unborn child is a “gift from God.”
Of the 50 US Governors, only 6 are female, two Democrats and four Republicans. When both Bev Purdue (North Carolina) and Christine Gregoire (Washington) retire at the end of their term this year, they’ll leave only one, newly elected female Democratic Governor, Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire.America Votes in conjunction with state and national partners worked tirelessly to elect Ms.Hassan to the Governor’s office as a part of a program to elect progressives across the state.
Follow us tonight for more stories and a look behind the scenes
In Pennsylvania, another round of trouble at the polls. As thousands of new voters attempt to vote for the first time they are finding themselves turned away because they do no appear on the voter registration list. The newest report from the Washington post says that upwards of 20,000 new voters did not have their registration processed in time for them to be able to vote in today’s election.
Polls a Fiasco for Many New Voters in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh; Poll Watchers Told to Leave Certain Locations
Students refusal to be turned away from the polls, and quick action with attorneys reveals significant errors by election officials in student heavy precincts around the state. As a result of their swift action, hundreds, perhaps thousands, of students will be able to vote instead of being told - incorrectly - that they are not eligible.
At least several hundred first time voters going to polls near or on college campuses in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia are reporting apparently being left off the rolls at the locations on their voting cards and having to vote by provisional ballot. Additionally, the confusion is creating particularly long lines, further endangering turn out for voters in those precincts.
Reports began coming in this morning from students at Pitt and Temple that they were being turned away from the polls despite being at the polling locations they were directed to by their voter identification cards. When the students entered their addresses on Pennsylvania State website they were directed to the same polling location as the one of their cards. The students called attorneys who helped to ensure that they could vote by provisional ballot, however, these ballots will not necessarily be counted, and now many locations are reporting running low on provisional ballots.
In one case at Temple University in Philadelphia, students who reside in the 1300 and Temple Towers dorms were directed both by their voter registration cards and state website to the 20-11 polling location at 10th and Oxford. However, the students were not on the rolls and have been voting by provisional ballot. In this case, it appears that the city did not properly update its rolls after redistricting moved those dorms to a new precinct, risking the votes of thousands of students.
At the University of Pittsburgh similar problems have been reported, with students attempting to vote at the locations on their voter registration cards now being given provisional ballots only after legal intervention. However, poll watchers monitoring the situation, collecting the names of the potentially disenfranchised voters, and handing out the national voter protection hotline number (1-800-OUR-VOTE) have been told by poll workers they need to leave the premises.
Students also report poll watchers have been kicked out of the Temple polling location at 16th and Berks.
“It’s really disheartening for students who are voting for the first time to be turned away or given a provisional ballot, as if by participating in our democratic system they were doing something wrong,” commented PennPIRG student organizer Ryan Molson. “Much of this confusion seems like it could have been avoided by modernizing our registration systems.”
At least six polling locations at Pitt and five at Temple have reported similar problems. At least one polling place near Temple’s campus is reporting that it has nearly run out of provisional ballots.
We have made it half way through Election Day 2012 and we are learning some interesting things about this election. One of the issues that is quickly becoming a huge issue on Election Day is voter suppression.We start in Arizona where citizens are receiving wrong polling information from Republican US Senate Candidate Jeff Flake is being accused of sending RoboCalls to Democrats that provide them with the wrong information about where to vote.In Pennsylvania the problem is not that people don't know where to vote, but when they tried to vote for President Obama it only allowed them to choose other candidates but not select Obama. A voter in Pennsylvania shot this video, voting machines, this morning. There are concerns from South Carolina to Colorado that machines are not calibrated correctly.
Election Day is officially under way and the first results are in. Per tradition, two small downs in New Hampshire vote first, and the results are in! In one town, Dixville Notch, ten votes were cast, and for the first time in history there was a tie. Five votes were cast for President Obama and five votes were cast for Governor Romney. It took approximately 43 seconds to cast all ten votes, and each voter knows the importance of their vote.With tight races up and down the ballot, every vote will count this year, no matter if you live in Dixville Notch, NH or an urban city, the suburbs--just remember to get out today and vote! Your vote matters. (And in Hart's Location, President Obama bested Governor Romney 23-9, with Gary Johnson earning two votes.)Dixville Notch
Voting should be easy. You show up and cast your ballot. Done. But officials across the country are making it more difficult than necessary to vote, creating confusion among voters. In Florida, hundreds of voters got locked out of the election site by Mayor Carlos Gimenez who sought to stop early voting. In Pennsylvania, you do not need to have an ID to cast your ballot but election officials are still allowed to ask for one. In New Hampshire, those without photo IDs have to fill out a challenged voter affidavit before they are allowed to fill out a ballot. Adding on top of all this the mess that Hurricane Sandy created in New York and New Jersey and we have a recipe for a messy Election Day ahead of us. There is going to continue to be a lot of confusion out there and America Votes and our partners are working hard to make sure that everyone knows the information they need to be able to cast their ballot today. We are not going to let people be swayed from voting because of these roadblocks that have been put up.
It's finally Election Day 2012, and all across the country people are gearing up to express a right fundamental to being an American, the right to vote for whoever we want. And yet this year it seems to be harder than ever to vote. Remember the line for the coolest ride at an amusement park? As you wrapped in and out of polls, from this point 2 hours, from this point 45 minutes and so on, it was torture, and yet in 2012 those are the kinds of lines we are asking voters to stand in as the express their rights as Americans.There are countless stories of long lines, tired voters and voters who had to leave lines because of family or work obligations. Due to a dramatic decrease in the cumulative hours that early voting centers are open in a number of swing states, we're seeing record-breaking lines for the polls. In Florida, lines for the polls exceed 6 hours in some places. In Ohio, lines wrapped around city blocks as people waited out in the cold. In Virginia, the frustration of voters waiting was palatable. Six-Hour Wait to Vote