My sister Mary Bacon walked into the Precinct 101 voting station at the St. James Armenian Church in Richmond around 7:45 a.m. today. She was working through her ballot when a woman in the voting booth next to her exclaimed, “Hey, half my ballot is filled out!”
The two-sided paper ballot, which had state and local races on the second page, had all the local races marked. The woman complained, the local electoral volunteers gave her a new ballot, and that was that. No one else voiced a similar problem while Mary was in the room, and no one got exercised about the incident.
Except Mary. “I was stunned,” she told me. “I’ve never seen anything like that.”
She called the Richmond registrar’s office to lodge a complaint, or pursue whatever procedure would get the incident on record. The receptionist told her that there was nothing she could do. There were no mechanisms to file a complaint. The precinct manager would take care of it.
In all likelihood, the incident was a fluke. If you want to tamper with the election, you don’t do it by slipping filled-out ballots to voters who, like the woman in Precinct 101, would raise a hue and cry.
But who knows for sure? Mary didn’t think to ask which candidates were marked on the ballot. Given the intensity of the City of Richmond mayor’s race, it would be interesting to know which mayoral candidate had been pre-selected. If anyone was playing hanky-panky with the electoral process, that would be the first place I’d look.
If anyone else has witnessed something like this, let me know. As Auric Goldfinger told James Bond, “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it’s enemy action.”
— JABThere are currently no comments highlighted.