Will Hurricane Sandy Affect Voting Next Week?
Ballot scanning machines like these could be disabled in power outages. (WIBC.com file photo)
Hurricane Sandy could have an impact on voting on the east coast.
It's not yet known what cities on the east coast will be like on November 6th but Pam Smith, President of the nonpartisan, non-profit organization Verified Voting, says assuming polling places are still useable, voters should be able to cast their votes even if the electronic scanners aren't working. Smith says voters can mark their paper ballots which will be stored in an auxilliary bin until either power is restored or they can be counted by the central elections office.
Smith says the electronic ballot scanners are set up to run on battery backups in case of temporary power outages. However, if there is a prolonged outage, polling places would need supplies of emergency paper ballots and the question is whether states and local jurisdictions have contingency plans in place with enough emergency supplies in case of those long outages.