Arlington, VA

As the 7:00 p.m. deadline for voting nears, we’re hearing of a few problems at the polls in Arlington County — but both Republicans and Democrats say they’re happy with the day’s events.

“The numbers we’re getting back show a higher than 2009 turnout, which gives us room for optimism,” said Mike Lieberman, chairman of the Arlington County Democratic Committee. He emphasized that county Democrats are “cautiously” optimistic.

“Given how strange this year is we’re not taking anything for granted until we see the actual numbers come in,” he said.

Arlington County Republican Committee vice-chair Charles Hokanson said the day was largely “uneventful” in terms of problems.

“From what i can gather, it sounds like turnout is about what would be expected in an off-year election,” he said. He added that the organization has significantly improved its operations at the polls on election day.

“We’re having our best precinct operations in the past decade or more, ” Hokanson said, noting that they had volunteers at 50 out of 51 county precincts.

Arlington County Registrar Linda Lindberg acknowledged reports from both parties of voting machines freezing up in some precincts.

Of the several precincts that had issues with voting machines, Oak Ridge/Gunston appeared to have the worst problems. Democrats reported that voters there had to use paper ballots during part of the morning.

“We’re dealt with all those issues,” Lindberg said.

“My sense is [turnout] was probably a little bit better than we anticipated,” Lindberg added. “We’ve had steady voting all day in most precincts.”


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