- Comparing her first election to the maiden voyage of the Titanic, political columnist Matt Tully writes, "White's maiden voyage as elections chief capsized immediately as many poll workers failed to show up Tuesday." "It was so bad that not only did dozens of polls fail to open on time, but some never opened at all." "Ballots were not delivered to some precincts." "No one knows how many voters were denied the chance to cast a ballot, making it hard to understand how this election could be considered valid."
- Reporter Robert King writes, "Beth White's first Election Day as Marion County clerk started going downhill long before the sun rose, when 150 precinct inspectors -- the folks in charge of the polls -- never showed up to collect ballots and voter lists." "But by the end of perhaps the most chaotic, confused and bumbling election in Marion County's history, things got so bad that questions were raised about whether White should resign and whether major election reform is needed to prevent another debacle." "The problems were countywide and profound." "Five of the county's 917 precincts never opened.
At least 45 more opened late." "Ballots and precinct voting lists were shipped in several cases to the wrong voting location, forcing election officials to print new ones, some as late as 4 p.m. -- 10 hours into the 12-hour voting day." "Poll clerks and poll judges with no inspector training were deputized on the spot to fill in for the 150 missing inspectors." "She has no plans to resign."
- And from the Star's editorial, "But for now, the credibility of an entire primary election is in jeopardy." "Citizens are left to wonder how the county will reconcile its flawed, incomplete vote." "One of the most basic principles of our democracy has been violated."
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Beth White Takes Her Lumps
Marion County Clerk Beth White endured a public flogging in today's Star for her handling of yesterday' primary election and deservedly so. It's hard to believe some of former County Clerk Doris Ann Sadler's worst critics were wishing she were still in charge, but after yesterday's debacle, Sadler looks like a God send. Here's a sampling of what the paper had to say: