Amounts to 'Elderly Abuse,' Says Emailer; 'A Poll Tax,' Says MSNBC's Rachel Maddow...
By Brad Friedman on 11/3/2008, 1:33pm PT  

From an emailer in Florida...

Brad - I'm watching elderly voters, with canes, who can barely stand, waiting for up up 7 hours to early vote in Florida. It's breaking my heart. PLEASE WRITE ABOUT IT AND DEMAND AARP TO MONITOR THIS. I really hope people are not getting hurt in their attempt to exercise their voting rights. This is either voter disenfranchisement or elder abuse - neither is acceptable.

And we continue to hear from other sources that the bottleneck in Florida is at check-in with the state's new, computerized voter registration system, not with the new paper ballot op-scan system which is used after a voter votes. (Though there have been reported problems with the state's new Diebold print-on-demand system for printing ballots for voters to fill out as well.)

Rachel Maddow correctly noted (see video below) that these waits in FL, GA, and elsewhere, amount to a "poll tax." She's right.

As I noted last week, we have just one early voting location in all of Los Angeles --- the largest voting jurisdiction in the country, larger than 41 states combined --- and at this point, I have no idea if I'll be able to vote myself if the lines are too long tomorrow, since I have to go on air LIVE, hell or highwater at 3pm PT to anchor the NovaM Radio Network's "Special Election Night Coverage."

Here's what the lines looked like this weekend at L.A.'s only early voting location, a 40-minute drive from where I live (photo: Margery Epstein)...

And here's Rachel making her case, and pointing to 10 hour lines in Atlanta and elsewhere...

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