Problems reported at some polling precincts

Sarah Bloomquist Image
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
VIDEO: Problems reported at some polling precincts
It wasn't all smooth-sailing at the polls.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Today is primary day and voters from five states are heading to the polls to pick their party's presidential candidate.

People in Pennsylvania and Delaware, along with Maryland, Connecticut, and Rhode Island have until 8 p.m. to cast their vote.

Many polling locations say voter turnout has been high, especially for a primary.

But it wasn't all smooth-sailing at the polls. A number of voters called Action News to report problems at their precincts.

Volunteers from The League of Women Voters came to 6abc Studios on Tuesday where they fielded calls from voters reporting problems or asking questions.

Many of the calls came from Independent voters wondering why they aren't allowed to vote. This is considered a "closed" election. That means voters can only cast ballots for the party they registered with by March 28th.

And then, if you are a registered Republican, you can only vote for Republican candidates.

If you are a Democrat, you can only vote for Democratic candidates.

If you are an Independent, you can only vote on the ballot questions - not for any political offices.

These rules are the same in both Pennsylvania and Delaware.

Some voters ran into problems when they arrived at their polling places Tuesday morning.

In East Falls voters in the 21st and 38th ward were forced to fill out paper ballots because the apartment building hosting the polling place had locked up the voting machines.

Al Schmidt, City Commissioner, explains, "For whatever reason, the facility locked our voting machines in one of their storage rooms. So we called a locksmith out and ended up having to break through the door to retrieve the machines so that voters can vote."

Voting officials said there are always a few problems at the polls, considering there are 7,500 volunteers working at 1,686 different locations.

So, if you do run into problems, The League of Women Voters are here to answer your calls at 877-940-6222.