CHICAGO — Some voters who flocked to the polls early Tuesday did not receive every part of the two-page ballot.
The snafus stem from poll workers who handed voters “Ballot A” and not the second page, “Ballot B,” said Max Bever, spokesperson for the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners.
“Ballot A” includes a constitutional question on workers’ organizing rights, races for federal, county and state offices as well as appellate and circuit courts, along with a public question about raising taxes to benefit forest preserves. “Ballot B” allows voters to choose which judges should be retained.
The election board has texted all election judges a reminder to give out both ballots, Bever said. Election investigators will go to polling places that have received complaints, which are “under a couple dozen,” Bever said.
Voters who filled out “Ballot A” will still have that ballot counted even if they did not get both ballots, Bever said.
Voters who suspect they didn’t get “Ballot B” are asked to stay at their polling place and speak to their election judge, who is trained to resolve issues, Bever said. People who already left should call the election central hotline at 312-269-7870, Bever said.
“It’s hard to amend ballots after a voter leaves a polling place,” Bever said. “There’s a chance they can complete them.”
Several voters said they returned to their polling places later Tuesday and were given the second part of their ballots to complete.
Hannah Lieb was first in line 5:50 a.m. Tuesday outside Chopin Elementary, 2450 W. Rice St., she said. The polls opened 20 minutes late, and poll workers didn’t have ballots out, Lieb said.
“It felt like they weren’t prepared and not well-trained,” Lieb said. “Everything was kind of in disarray.”
Lieb submitted “Ballot A” in the voting machine but “felt like something was up,” so she searched for a sample ballot when she got home and saw she hadn’t been given “Ballot B” to vote on judges. Election officials allowed Lieb to finish her ballot when she went back to Chopin around 7 a.m., she said.
“I wonder how long it could have taken them to realize this if it weren’t for some voters coming back to warn them,” Lieb said. “It’s tough because some people plan their day around this, and now they can’t come back to finish their ballot.”
Britney Robertson voted Tuesday morning at Lake Parc Place, 3983 S. Lake Park Ave. She received “Ballot A” from a stack on the table and put it through the voting machine, she said. Like Lieb, Robinson realized when she got home she hadn’t voted on “Ballot B,” even after she spent “a lot of time researching the judges,” she said.
Robinson said she called the election central hotline, which “rang and rang and rang and hung up on me.”
Robinson returned to Parc Place and was given the rest of her ballot to fill out, she said.
“They were super nice about it. It wasn’t malicious, just a mistake,” Robinson said. “They didn’t know to give us two pages.”
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