A new report from Pew suggests that this election has the potential to make 2000 look organized. With new voter ID laws, long lines, record turnout, wrongfully purged voter rolls, new machines and more, it could be a tense night, even if the outcome is decided early.
The launch of the 77-page report came as legal clashes over voter registration and hours-long queues formed outside booths set up for early voting in states across the US. Voting is now underway in 46 of the 50 states, though election day is still almost a fortnight away.
Virginia, a battleground state, said it will step up security at polling booths on November 4. Election officials fear trouble because of passions aroused by the election, by long queues, or by people being told they are not eligible to vote.
Doug Chapin, director of Pew’s electionline.org, said: “People talk about meltdown. It is over-optimistic to think that 130 million people can vote and something does not go wrong ... We have spent eight years sorting the plumbing, but on November 4 we are going to crank up the system.”