All eyes are on California on this Super Tuesday, but the Golden State might try everyone’s patience with a vote count that could stretch into the morning hours. The state, which is expecting a record turnout, recently switched back to paper ballots—good for its democratic process but bad for its sleepy friends on the East Coast.
Compounding California’s vote-counting challenges are millions of absentee ballots and early-voting ballots that have yet to be turned in. Officials said many of those voters are expected to drop the ballots off at their polling places Tuesday.
Because of concerns over reliability, California decertified many of the state’s electronic voting machines. More than a third of the state’s 58 counties will go from directly recorded electronic ballots to paper.
In places such as San Bernardino County, east of Los Angeles, where more than 3,000 voting machines will be sitting in a warehouse, paper ballots are back. Paper ballots will take more time to count, said Kari Verjil, San Bernardino County’s registrar.