Voter woes at O'ahu polls - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

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    There were more people than usual.
    56 votes
    It was about the same compared to the primary election.
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  • Voter woes at O'ahu polls

Voter woes at O'ahu polls

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On O'ahu many voters expressed frustration about unusually long slow moving lines at polling places Tuesday.  Election officials tell KITV a number of factors could've caused delays at the polls.

While the percentage of voters who turned out was slightly lower than the General Election in 2012, the number of registered voters who showed up ticked up a bit. 

POLL: How was the voter turnout at your polling site for the general election?

Nearly 23,000 new voters registered between the primary in August and Tuesday's general.  Officials said big wait times could've been linked to turnout and also the amount of time voters spent answering the 20 charter amendment questions listed on a second ballot. 

Eighteen sites had trouble with scan machines.  KITV came across a number of voters who said it took more than an hour to scan completed ballots because there was only one machine at their polling place.

Chief election officer Scott Nago said faulty machines were swapped out in a timely manner and each site is assigned just one scanner and that's unlikely to change.

"If we look at the trend, more and more people are actually voting prior to Election Day so the number of people voting by mail is actually going up and the number of people voting at the polls is decreasing so going ahead into the future if we have to take that into account," said Nago.

State Elections Commission Chairman Scotty Anderson says he's advocating to switch to a statewide vote by mail election. 

"All the problems that we had yesterday would not exist with all mail in voting. Wouldn't happen. It would save us $800,000 every election cycle here in Hawaii. I consider that to be significant money. It's a very safe system. We have all kinds of back up to protect the integrity of the ballot," Anderson explained. 

The commission plans to present the idea next legislative session. Currently, Oregon, Washington and Colorado are the only three states that hold elections strictly by mail.

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