Your Voices on Voting

Tuesday, November 02, 2010


Today is voting day and we've asked you to call in to tell us how you feel this election — and you did! 

Some of you say you're excited and energized after casting your ballot, but many of you are disappointed in the ballot itself and in the spirit of politics this election.




Here is more of what you told us:

I am hopeful. And my voting experience, though the print was very small, was much much better than the primary.

-- Tony Meola of New York

I went to vote this morning and it wasn't until I got to work after voting that a friend told me the referendum were on the back of the ballot. Nobody at the polling place gave me those instructions. It wasn't anywhere, so I feel like I've lost part of my right to vote but I guess that's how the cookie crumbles when you've got a new system and bad people implementing it.

-- Kyla Caperstein of New York

I don't really feel anything. It's really kind of sad. I'm just voting basically because fear has gripped so many people that it is making them act irrationally. I'm more voting against the fear of trying to let change work, than I'm voting for any other reason.

-- Alana I. of New York

Lonely. I was one of the very few people in the voting station and when the lady was turning to my name in the voting registry I realized that it was a very very thin book. In my estimation there should be more people out voting today.

-- Ben in Williamsburg, Brooklyn

I'm an immigrant who came to America ten years ago and my grandma came to America about seven years ago. She got her citizenship a couple of years ago and today was her first time voting, she's 87, and it was just a great thing to see her vote and she was very proud. We both came from Russia, so I just wanted to say, it's an amazing country and it's great that we can vote, even if we do have so many problems right now.

-- Elena

I feel okay about voting, I guess it was a necessary evil. I can't say I am happy with any of the candidates. I will say about my polling place, all the signs stating "Vote Here" had arrows pointed to a gate and this gate had a giant padlock on it. I did rap on the glass and finally had somebody come outside and let me in through a side entrance that was not accessible to the public, so I don't know how many people just walked away from voting today.

-- Northeast Williamsburg

I was in and out of there in less then fifteen minutes, it was really impressive and very well handled by the people working at the site and they were very friendly also. Bit discouraged about the whole election but very excited about how well run the site was.

-- Hillary, voting at Winsdor Terace PS 10, Park Slope, Brooklyn

It felt really good to vote, it always feels good to vote. It's a privilege and I'm looking forward to the end of this day and find out how things have gone.

-- Liz Rudnick, Upton, Massachusetts

I feel like I exercised my Constitutional rights as a citizen and took part. But otherwise I don't feel that politicians in either party have any concern for what's happening to us, the rank and file of America.

-- Glenn Beatty

Whenever I leave the polls I feel like I have at least done something for my country. I'm a little dissapointed because I am afraid not enough people are out there voting and there's a lot of negativity in the country. I pretty much decided not to vote for anyone who wrote a negative ad, therefore I wrote in a lot of candidates.

-- Laura Kennedy

My voting experience actually was great. It was really good considering we shifted to a new voting system. I'm actually happy to have also included my parents, in getting them out to vote also. So I was really happy and proud about that.

-- Bill, Queens, New York

Fabulous. It was a great experience with my children. They were worried that we didn't have time, but it was great to show em that that's our civic duty and that they should make time.

-- Maria Theresa McNeilianta, White House Station, New Jersey

I enjoyed the voting experience, but the voting is like voting in a Third World country. Why can't we have a screen where we can just press a button on the name that were your interested in? Why do we have to go through such a procedure in order to vote?

-- Leah

I had a problem today voting. The election workers did not inform me of the back of the ballot so I completely missed seeing the term limits issue and the other issue that was up for a vote. Which I I feel that I was basically left out of, which I find very irritating.

-- Anonymous

The polling stations are pretty easy, I don't know what everybody is talking about. The little machine that pulls your card in, it went right away, I had no problem. I feel pretty good about Cuomo so I didn't vote for him. I voted for Howie Hawkins.

-- Anonymous

I just voted and it feels wonderful to have participated in the democratic process. I split my ticket, I voted all over the place -- Republicans, Democrats, Working Families Party, write-ins.

-- Anonymous

It was very easy. And I saw that the poll worker was like, a little free with looking at the ballots when she was putting them through the machine, although I don't think she meant any harm. But I just put mine through myself.

-- Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn

Voting felt very strange not pulling the lever.

-- Lauren Heller

Was a bit confused and upset when voting, because I was handed the paper ballot, went to the privacy station, opened the folder, and found that I'd been given a ballot that had already been filled out by someone in pen. The circles for the senators, comptroller, and the house races were filled in already, and I noticed them, but I very easily could have not noticed them. So I had to return it and get a new ballot and nobody could explain why I was given a ballot that was already filled in.

-- Patrick Berry

I feel like I just took the S.A.T. again. It was so long and I couldn't remember half of the issues that I was voting on. I did vote totally democratic down the ticket, but I completely froze up when it got to the non-partisan voting part of it. So, I hope I did okay. I hope I did as well as I did on the S.A.T. I'm just so happy it's over.

-- Anonymous

Have YOU told us how you feel after voting? Let us know!



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Comments [10]

Natalie from Brooklyn, NY

I asked for a security folder and was refused. When I went to scan my ballot, a worker took my ballot and started reading it until I yelled at him that it was private.

Nov. 03 2010 12:11 PM

I'm searching in vain for the results of the two New York City charter initiatives.

Nov. 03 2010 07:38 AM
Sarah from Pound Ridge, NY

Whoever devised the new ballot and voting system in NY should be fired and fined for gross incompetence. I voted in Pound Ridge and was stunned by the lunacy of the ballot (20" wide with minute print) and the fragile ballot scanners. Several senior citizens ahead of me had to have their ballots hand-read because the scanner rejected them. And the plastic 'privacy' covers'?? Thank Heavens I've had my flu shot! If this is 'new and improved' let's go back to 'old and busted'!

Nov. 02 2010 09:50 PM
April S. from Brooklyn

I did not find it difficult to vote at all. The polling attendant explained the process to me. I managed to bubble in my votes with my baby strapped to my chest and I felt proud to fulfill my civic duty. I was a little uninformed about all of the candidates, though.

Nov. 02 2010 09:28 PM
Andree from Manhattan

I felt proud when I cast my vote - I got a little thrill when the electronic "your vote has been counted" message appeared. It always feels exciting, even in a year when I feel dispirited about the ugliness and Republican gridlock.

Nov. 02 2010 09:08 PM
Jordan H from Boerum Hill, Brooklyn

While I'm sad that some Tea Party candidates are actually being elected, I did have a very good experience at the polls. Helpful, friendly volunteers, and at 33 I'm still young enough to be able to read the microscopic font on the NY ballot.

After living (and voting) in the District of Columbia for 10 years, it was incredibly exciting to once again vote for Congressional representation.

Nov. 02 2010 08:44 PM
Dianna of Chelsea from Manhattan

While I have worked the past few elections, (including this past September’s Primary), I continue to be astonished at the “new and improved” voting system!
With technology today, it seems incredible that so many flaws were built into this new system! Some voters are upset, that even though you are handed a “privacy sleeve” – when it comes to actually scanning your ballot – it is not private at all – (especially if there is a problem with the scanner).
Why was the machine designed this way? Why couldn’t the ballot go in face down? I want to know, who got the contract to design and manufacture these machines?
There have already been countless complaints about the font size of the ballot. Is it really necessary to have ballots printed in five languages? Perhaps if they were printed in English/Spanish – then the actual print on the ballot could be large enough and dark enough for most people to read! Separate ballots could be printed in Chinese, Korean, etc.
I find the same poor design with the booth that the voter uses to fill in their ballot. Designers should know that most polling places are schools, church basements, community centers, lobbies of buildings, etc – all of which usually have bad lighting. This booth is just ridiculous – and at what cost? What financial cost and what cost to fair elections themselves? It just does not seem that it should be that complicated.

PS – at my very busy polling place in Chelsea, NYC only one scanner was operating. The poll worker explained, “well, you know – it’s like all of these electronic things – iPhones, computers....they are very sensitive”........!
How can something brand new break down so much and so often?

Nov. 02 2010 08:33 PM
Sally Olds from Port Washington, NY

I found the new ballot very helpful. I marked my choices on the Working Party line instead of the Democratic line, and when I scanned my ballot it came back saying I had undervoted. WP did not support one candidate that the Democrats did, and so I had failed to vote that one office. I was glad to have the chance to correct my vote and cast it for the person I want to win. Lighting was good, I had no trouble reading the ballot, the election people were helpful, and filling in the circles took me a long way back to my school days, SATs, etc. It was a cinch. I just hope all my people win.

Nov. 02 2010 07:13 PM
Naomi from Riverdale

I agree. The print was small and the privacy booth was dark, but the precinct attendant was very helpful, drew my attention to the referenda, and it went very quickly.

Nov. 02 2010 04:39 PM
beeb from clinton hill/fort greene

the choices were bad, but the experience was great. nice polling people, told me about BOTH sides of the ballot. font was too small but i was prepared. scanner worked, not bad, much better than the levers, i never trusted that.

Nov. 02 2010 04:09 PM

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