Saturday, November 01, 2008

Early Voting at City Hall

The Department of Elections has its headquarters in the basement of San Francisco's City Hall, and they have set up early voting over the last month for those trying to avoid the gridlock on Tuesday.

I took advantage of the service on Thursday afternoon at 2PM and was astonished to find hundreds of people in line doing the same thing.

There were dozens of booths set up and the department was running a smooth, tight operation, so the wait was little more than 30 minutes.

Still, it was amazing to see such a turnout, when usually the line of early voters numbers about 20 to 25 people at any one time. I asked a few of the election department employees if they had ever seen anything like it, and the simple answer was, "Nope."

I checked out the line again on Friday morning and it was the same story. After watching the national election stolen twice through a mixture of rigged touchscreen machines, purging of voter rolls, and various other tactics, it looks like the majority of America has decided to turn out in numbers so huge that the outcome won't be in any doubt, with ten-hour lines to vote early in Atlanta, for instance.

This is enormously cheering, and I'd encourage everyone to go vote early yourself since Tuesday should be a major mess. They are also keeping this service open over the weekend where you can enter City Hall on the Grove Street side.

Plus, you can check out the Lighthouse for the Blind art show on the walls while you're waiting.


Lisa Hirsch said...

We voted early in Oakland today. Shorter lines than you report but plenty of room for more. Probably turnout was depressed today by the rain.

Matthew Hubbard said...

It's remarkable how much faith people have in the electoral system given the obvious fraud perpetrated in 2000 and the bad smell of 2004, especially in Ohio.

If this one goes the wrong way, the only things that can stop violent revolution are fear and apathy.

Civic Center said...

Dear Lisa: Too bad about Oakland. Stopped by City Hall again this afternoon, mixed up my house keys with somebody else's in one of the baskets during the stupid security check, and now I've lost my front door keys. The good news, however, is that the lines were even double what I'd seen the previous days, and it was pouring outside. This election is starting to feel like a tsunami, and fear and apathy don't seem to be a part of the mix.