Thursday, November 20, 2008

Recount captivity day 3

I am still in recount captivity. We got 3 districts done today. Woo hoo.

The strain is starting to show on people. Some of the observers (and I am embarrassed to say it is some from my party) are being rude to some of the canvassers, about 75% whom are older people. I can't tolerate that crap and tomorrow I may have to say something to them about cooling it since I have to still live in this county. Since I am the vice chair of the county Dem party, I think it reflects badly on us. Sigh. Why can't people be nice to each other without having to be reminded?

We did do a lot of the campus wards today. And, as I expected, there were problems with some of the ballots there, but in a pleasant surprise, not as many as I thought there would be. The problems there were with absentee ballots (which is where the problems were mostly) showed that it was probably a little more hectic at those polling places than others. It was good for the Dem side that lots of young people voted and is a hopeful sign to me that perhaps these young people maybe care enough about our country to get out there and try to make it better. Or maybe I have been sitting in recount-land too long.

We were in a different, really small conference room today. I don't know if it was the smallness of the room or what, but it was sort of a like a powder keg for a while in there. The voting machine for us to run the ballots that had been all gone through was in the hall. I volunteered to go out there and watch the mindless ballot running for all afternoon. I did have a good time with the city clerk and one of the poll workers from Paulette's polling place that she works at. We were having such a good time that the Dem lawyer came out and told us to keep it down.

Tomorrow we are going to be back in the courthouse basement, where the room is really large. I think we are going to be there the rest of the time. It was cold down there, but people were more civil to each other there. Maybe the room temperature was helping them keep cool (pun intended).

This experience has inspired me to sign up to be a pollworker. Don't get me wrong--I appreciate everyone who is currently a pollworker. However, the thought that we are entrusting our electoral process to all those old people frankly scares me. The city clerk said she would like to use electronic poll lists but fears that half of her pollworkers would quit because they have enough trouble with the technology right now without adding more. I challenge all of the younger people who are reading this to get off your butt and take vacation or whatever on election day to work at the polls. Call your city clerk and volunteer! As a member of the classified staff who works for the state of Wisconsin at UW Oshkosh, I can work at the polls without using vacation because we negotiated that with the state in our union contract. I wish others would take Paulette's and my lead and help out. Maybe if we all did we wouldn't have such problems with mistakes that have been made at polling places.

I did manage to get a lot of knitting done while I was watching the ballots run through the optical scan machine. I even made friends with some of the Republicans who are there.

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