Polls open smoothly in District
All 143 city polling locations opened on time this morning, said Rokey W. Suleman II, executive director of the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics. That represents a much improved showing from the Sept. 14 primary, when issues with new equipment led to late openings in a handful of precincts.
As in September, Suleman said there have been "hiccups," primarily with poll workers who had trouble connecting printers to voting machines. The printers are necessary to print reports before polls open, showing that no votes have been cast on the machines. None of the issues delayed voters, Suleman said.
At Precinct 141, at the Frank D. Reeves Center at 14th and U Streets NW, some poll workers did not show up this morning, requiring officials to send in backup personnel.
Traci Hughes, a spokeswoman for Vincent Gray's mayoral campaign, said that she has gotten many fewer complaints than in September. "I'm not getting the frantic calls," she said. "So far, so good."
Gray had been deeply critical of the board's primary day performance.
After the primary, the board offered precinct captains and other poll workers as much as eight hours of additional training to prevent a repeat of September's problems. Officials, criticized for the late timing of primary returns, will face an additional test this evening as they aim to more swiftly report the day's results.