?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

A very long day in Huntington

I spent most of Monday fixing food and lining up other stuff for Tuesday's stint as an election officer in Fairfax County. I'd been assigned to a small precinct in Cameron Elementary School, right on the other side of the Beltway from Alexandria; the chief officer had called Sunday night to fill me in on the precinct and how he planned to run it. He expected we'd be out of there by 2030, and hoped to get through the day without any major problems and/or news crews showing up.

We set up in half of the school gym with two touch-screens, one optical scanner, and a printed pollbook, which turned out to be the bottleneck in the operation, and were ready to go when the polls officially opened at 0600. Lots of people made the mistake of showing up first thing in the morning, so that we had a line with hundreds of people in it extending up the other side of the divider that split the gym...and around all four walls back to the door. Once we got people checked in, they moved pretty quickly through the voting stations. I don't think we ever had more than six people in line for the touch-screens, and of course the optical scanner went even faster since you didn't have to wait for other people to fill out their ballots before you could do yours.

After the morning rush, which lasted through about 1100, the rest of the day was pretty leisurely, and I was damn glad I'd brought my Kindle. I was on pollbook/check-in duty for most of the day, which meant I wasn't on my feet or walking around, and that was probably a good thing. There was a minimum of fuss and bother; we had about a dozen infrequent voters or people who had moved at the last minute into the precinct after registering somewhere else, who had to fill out affidavits with the chief, but by and large everything went smoothly. Total turnout was about 80%, which given my experience in South Minneapolis was flat-out amazing, but then this precinct was almost all homeowners instead of renters and other transients.

I didn't pay any attention to the count. By the time 1900 rolled around and the polls closed, I was so tired I just wanted to help pack everything up and get the final report done so we could all GTFO. Which we did, a few minutes later than the 2030 target, but that was okay. I went home and ate dinner. Didn't even look at the early returns on the internet, didn't check my e-mail, just posted on FB briefly and then went to bed, where I slept through my alarm and woke up at 0730. I'll save my opinions regarding the election returns for another post.