Since there were already a lot of problems being reported in Philadelphia the day before Election Day, it comes as no surprise that Election Day itself is a bounty of problems with the polls open for less than three hours. “It’s looking like a messy election,” says Zack Stalberg, president and CEO of the non-partisan election watchdog group Committee of Seventy. That organization reports the following as of 9:35 a.m.:
Election Court is dealing with a host of minority (Republican) inspectors being denied access to their polling places in Philadelphia.
The New Black Panthers are back. They’re reportedly at the polling place at 11th and Germantown Streets.*
There are “You need a photo ID to vote” signs at a number of polling places. Seventy has asked the City Commissioners to have Judges of Elections take those signs down immediately. We’re also hearing that judges of election at at least two other polling places have been telling voters they need a photo ID to vote. You don’t need a photo ID to vote today in Pennsylvania, though elections officials are supposed to ask you if you have one.
A polling place at 7th and Cayoga Streets – in the city’s Latino area – has numerous voters who do not speak English – and reportedly no interpreter in sight.
* As I reported earlier this morning, the New Black Panthers are also on the 1200 block of Fairmount Avenue.