Election Day

I was at the polls from 6:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., with a couple of short breaks. It was a grueling day. About 300 people voted in person (250 had voted early), from three precincts that were combined. Ours is the minority party in our part of Houston–their polling place was swarming, with long lines. Our longest line had a dozen people in it about 6:30 p.m. It went smoothly, for the most part, but both parties and the county failed in one thing–they didn’t get the word out to people about changed polling places and combined precincts. Thus the person standing at the door (me, for most of the day) had to send away as many people as came by, directing them to their polling place. The vast majority were understanding and grateful for the directions; a few were confused; two were downright mean. Those coming to our poll from other locations complained of workers there not knowing where to send them, or making nasty comments. Not nice.

We had record turnout for precinct convention–15 to 20 for each instead of the usual 3 or 4.  But on the other side of the political aisle–chaos. Hundreds of people, reports say. Some of their caucuses kept the doors locked until 10:30 p.m., with angry people left out in the cold. There were reports of power plays, with supporters of one candidate locking the doors early to prevent the supporters of other candidates from showing up. We had none of that–simply because the party I participate in only uses the convention to decide delegates to the next level convention (state senatorial district) and to discuss resolutions to send upward.

This was not only the first federal election in which my son participated, but he also served as a clerk at the polling place, and he attended the precinct convention and was elected as one of the delegates to the SD convention.