Democrats, Republicans play blame game for polling problems on Super Tuesday

HOUSTON – The problems on election night were hard to go unnoticed.

Long lines, a change in polling locations and voting machines forced many to wait hours before they could cast their ballot.

Democrats and Republicans both played the blame game on Wednesday.

"The issues that we saw were because Republicans have been in power and really required us to agree and haven’t updated our machines, because previous republican administrations didn’t ever feel the need to fund it,” said Democratic Chair Lillie Schecter.

Republican Chair Paul Simpson called Tuesday’s issues voting system failure. He said the county failed to allocate voting machines properly, mismanaged and had faulty equipment.

Democratic voters also cited less polling locations in predominately Latino and African American communities.

Schecter told KPRC 2 there were only 71 polling locations in precinct 1, 84 in precinct 2, 125 in precinct 3 and 120 in precinct 4.

"It’s important to the Democrats to have county-wide voting so we had to agree on all the locations. The Republicans did not want to have county-wide voting and said here’s our map if you want countywide voting, you have to agree to this map,” Schecter said.

Simpson responded when questioned about the fewer locations.

“That is one of the things that happens with county-wide voting. In most cases, you go to a smaller location over time and it is harder for people to vote," Simpson said.

Harris County Clerk Diane Trautman said despite the problems, she believes the November General Election will be different.

“There will be just one line, voters can come in and use all the machines and they can vote at any voting location," Trautman said.

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