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Election Protection: Make Sure Your Vote Counts — ACTION Request For Virginia

There are widespread reports of voting problems already this morning in Virginia.  The Election Protection folks have had a steady stream of reports of polling places opening late, enormous lines, machines not working properly, insufficient ballots, and other problems.  Other groups are getting widespread reports of voting irregularities and polling place problems across the state.  

If you are a Virginia voter who has had problems, please report them to the hotline numbers below.  

Also, please call:

— Gov. Tim Kaine at the Virginia Governor’s office at (804) 786-2211 

The Virginia State Board of Elections at Telephone: 804 864-8901 Toll Free: 800 552-9745 FAX: 804 371-0194 (Apparently, they’ve been flooded with calls. Just call Gov. Kaine’s office for now. thanks!)

Request that they ask the courts to allow polls to stay open an additional two hours today to give voters additional voting time to remedy these errors.  Only the courts in Virginia can order the extended hours for voting — but they can do so at the request of Gov. Kaine or the State Board of Elections.  

Please ask that they do so — every vote needs to be counted, but for that to happen, people need to be able to vote.  

As a public service reminder for today, you can report any voting problems to the Election Protection hotline. Write this information down, just in case you or someone you know needs it:

• For immediate assistance, call the nonpartisan 1-866-OUR-VOTE hotline.
• To report problems to Election Protection’s state teams through Twitter, use these guidelines.

Also, these resources will allow anyone to track Election Protection’s breaking news as it happens on Election Day:

• ( – A live map and full database of all the reports received through the hotline
• OurVoteLive Blog ( – Breaking news and analysis on the state of the vote
• 866OurVote Twitter account ( – Breaking news and reports as they happen

Also, the Obama campaign has set up its own election hotline:

• To report problems at your polling place or your vote to the Obama campaign, call 1-877-US4OBAMA.
• Also, you can find information about your polling place on the Obama/Biden website.

Additional information can be found via the Brennan Center, the ACLU and we’ll certainly be updating all day long here at FDL.  Now, get out there and vote! 

Voting problems reported thus far today:  Dozens of callers in Virginia are reporting serious polling place problems, including broken machines, long lines, and a lack of parking. Some polling places are not even open yet.

Stay tuned for more updates at

* More reports of absentee voters not receiving their ballot in the mail from Florida, Colorado, Illinois and Louisiana voters.
* Indiana, Virginia and Pennsylvania – flyers and calls giving voters serious misinformation, like instructing people to vote on Wednesday
* Blacksburg, VA: Voters reporting that there are too few voting machines to handle the large crowds.
* Danville, VA: the relative of someone living in a nursing home reported evidence that nursing home residents who do not have family members present may have been intimidated and influenced while filling out absentee ballots.
* New Jersey: Voting rights experts report that voter registrations in at least twelve counties will not be processed by Election Day and voters from across the state may have to cast provisional ballots as a result.
* Mississippi: A caller reported that she collected 500 registrations and submitted all of them. She checked the status of several of them today and evidently none were processed.

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com