Actor Tim Robbins, one of a few who've been very outspoken about election integrity concerns, was told he was no longer on the rolls yesterday in NYC, at the polling place where he'd voted for "more than a decade".
A "ruckus" reportedly ensued as Robbins fought to not have to vote on a provisional ballot, and eventually was forced to go see a judge in order to get to cast his vote.
Says Robbins, in the short video below, as he was in the process of getting the needed paperwork to fight to cast his vote in America: "This is what you have to do to vote... I had to go down to see a judge... My name was not on the roll, and I'm not the only one. According to workers, 30 people in 5 hours had been taking off the rolls. You can do the math on that. 6 per hour, per district across America..."
P.S. Note from Brad: Much to get caught up on today --- from the Al Franken mess in MN, questions about the Prop 8 results in CA, about Ted Stevens' Diebold re-election in AK, MO's close race for President and much more --- even as I've got a phalanx of promised media interviews, etc. to get through all day. Remember, most of the problems from Election Day don't begin to reveal themselves until the days following the election. So much catchup to come soon. My thanks for your patience, and for both Jim Cirile and Des' work in keeping this joint up to date-ish as I've been otherwise unable to do much BRAD BLOGGING over the last 24 or so...
UPDATE 12:20pm PT: The Nation's John Nichols notes the "Orwellian twist", given Robbins' appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher just over a week ago, urging people to fight for their right to vote not on a provisional ballot if they found themselves purged from the rolls on Election Day...
“Refuse provisional ballots. They’re throwing those out. They can throw those out. If that’s your last resort, take it, but fight in the polling place to vote. It’s your right as an American. You have every right to vote if you’re registered. And if you’re not on the rolls and something went wrong, document it. Video cameras at polls are going to be an effective way to fight this Election Day.”
In an Orwellian twist on the actual Election Day, Robbins had to take his own advice. When he showed up at the New York City polling place where the politically-active actor has been voting for more than a decade, he was told that his name was not on the list of registered voters. So he refused to leave his polling place in Greenwich Village, even after an election worker suggested that the police might have to be called. Finally informed that he could go downtown to the office of the city’s Board of Elections, Robbins made the trek, got verification that he was properly registered, got a judge to rule that he would be allowed to vote, and headed back to his polling place to finally vote five hours after his Election Day ordeal began.
Robbins had the time, the resources and the information to make sure his vote would be cast and counted. He could overcome the hurdles placed in the way of democracy.
But not all Americans were so well-positioned, or so determined, as Robbins. And that is why Tuesday’s election cannot be called a success by anyone who takes serious the promise of the American experiment.
Nichols has much more on the disaster that remains our electoral system, and what can and must now be done about it...