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Garland County runs into vote-machine trouble

By The Associated Press

This article was published May 21, 2014 at 7:44 a.m.

HOT SPRINGS — Too few voting machines and untimely breakdowns led to long lines at two Garland County polling locations, and some voters walked away without casting ballots.

Garland County Election Commission chairman Ginna Watson says one Hot Springs polling site on Central Avenue had a printer problem Tuesday that slowed the pace of voting.

Watson told The Sentinel-Record that there were machine issues at most precincts. One polling site on Malvern Avenue had only one voting machine all day.

Watson says machines were distributed based on past voting patterns in which about half of voters cast early ballots. Unexpectedly, only about 6 percent of voters voted early and election workers weren't ready for the relatively heavy turnout Tuesday.

Officials say the long lines led some voters to leave rather than wait.

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RBBrittain says... May 21, 2014 at 6:28 p.m.

Reading between the lines, it seems this was not enough machines DEPLOYED, not purchased. Unlike paper ballots, it should NOT cost that much more to put additional voting machines out there that have ALREADY been purchased. Unless election-day turnout was greater than in recent years, low early-voting numbers should NOT have been used as an excuse to deploy fewer voting machines on election day.

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