Due to a problem with Electronic Voting Machines in Los Angeles County, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was told he had already voted when he showed up at the polls today to cast his ballot in the Special Election that he himself declared for California today!
He was told he'd have to use a provisional ballot, but unlike most American voters, he was eventually allowed to use a regular ballot anyway.
Los Angeles County Registrar, Conny McCormack (a huge fan of Diebold machines, and a very good friend of their sales rep here in Southern California) is trying to mitigate the damage...big time...Though she admits that someone "breached protocol in advance of the election"
It should be further noted, that the Governator was attempting to vote in Brentwood (in Los Angeles County), but the "breach" --- which would have kept a normal non-Gubernatorial citizen from voting on anything but a provisional ballot --- occurred in Pasadena, about a 30 to 45 minute drive from Brentwood. Early voting, on paperless Diebold Touch-Screen Voting Machines, has been occurring in Los Angles County for the last several weeks.
From Los Angeles Times... [emphasis added]
SACRAMENTO --- Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger showed up to his Brentwood neighborhood polling station today to cast his ballot in the special election --- and was told he had already voted.
Elections officials said a Los Angeles County poll worker had entered Schwarzenegger's name into an electronic voting touch screen station in Pasadena on Oct. 25. The worker, who was not identified, was testing the voting machine in preparation for early voting that began the next day.
Schwarzenegger's aides were informed of the problem when they arrived this morning to survey the governor's polling station. The poll worker told the governor's staff he would have to use a "provisional" ballot that allows elections workers to verify if two votes were made by the same person. McCormack said the poll worker did the correct thing.
The governor, however, was allowed to use a regular ballot.
"This is someone who breached our protocol and was playing around in advance of the election," she said.
Tom Hiltachk, the governor's attorney, said: "I have no reason to believe anything nefarious occurred.
But Kim Alexander, president of the nonpartisan California Voter Foundation, said the problem highlights the need for better verification of electronic voting.
"If the governor is going to have a mix-up on his ballot," she said, "it will make other voters wonder what is going to happen with their ballots."
(Thanks to John Gideon of www.votersunite.org for alerting us about this one!)
CORRECTION: The original version of this article had said that Schwarzenegger had voted in Sacramento. Schwarzenegger had, in fact, voted at his Brentwood precinct, which is in Los Angeles County. The BRAD BLOG regrets the error.