By Robert Press
It seems that the Board of Election underestimated the number of people that would come out and vote on Primary day 2020. In visiting many locations in different districts lines were inside some while at a few others the line went out the door at times. The one thing I saw seemed to be that there was at least one scanning machine less than normal at all poll sites I visited. I also noticed that several Election Districts were combined at one table, thus meaning there were less poll workers at each polling site.
In speaking to poll workers I heard that the two page ballot was not explained to them correctly. A few sites had new Coordinators running them, which at one site I could only find one Coordinator who really didn't wanted to be bothered by anything. That Coordinator did not know what to do when poll workers asked a question. I reported this directly to the Board of Elections. I saw at one poll site candidate workers almost outside the entrance handing out palm cards. I could hear a police officer on his way back from lunch say "didn't I tell you that you had to be across the street"? There seemed to be an awful lot of Affidavit ballots at a table in one poll site. That was because it was a split poll site and the ballots from the second congressional district never were delivered so voters there had to use Affidavit ballots to vote.
According to the Board of Elections website in the Bronx almost one-hundred thousand Absentee Ballots were mailed out to voters who requested them. As of June 26, 2020 only close to eighteen thousand have been returned, with a deadline of June 30, 2020. Mind you during the petition process when candidates claimed they received their hearing notices after the date of the hearing the answer from the BOE was that the BOE can not be responsible if the USPS can not deliver the mail on time.
However the Board of Elections may have a bigger problem as it printed ballots before all the court cases were heard. It seems that Ruben Diaz backed candidates in the 79th and 87th assembly districts for party positions who were ruled off the ballot by the BOE were placed back on the ballot by the courts. One has to wonder why the BOE appealed that decision, while printing up absentee ballots and regular ballot with the names of the Diaz backed candidates. The appeal was upheld, and the candidates were ruled off the ballot again. I tried to ask Michael Ryan the head of the Board of Elections that question, or even the Chief Law Clerk for the BOE as I did with the candidates receiving notice of hearings after the hearing date. This time I was transferred to Ms. Valerie Vazquez-Diaz the media contact at the BOE. I said that I had a legal question about something, and told her about finding the names of candidates on the ballot that I thought were suppose to be off the ballot. After a while I called her back whereas she said the ballots were printed up before the appeal was decided. The BOE had placed the names on the ballot not knowing the outcome of the court case, and that since the candidates were ruled off the ballot that those ballots would not count if anyone voted for the candidates.
In the 79th A.D. there was a full slate of party candidates down to Judicial Delegates, while in the 87th A,D, there were only two party positions with a slate of Judicial Delegates. In viewing the primary night results in the 79th A.D. twenty-three votes separate the first and second place Male District Leader candidates, and it is not known how many votes the Ruben Diaz backed candidate received who is not listed on the recap. Had that candidate not been on the ballot that may have changed the voting. This is also seen for Female District Leader, Male and Female State Committee members also since there is a small difference from the first and second place candidates that could be different if these candidates were not on the ballot. Also something to wonder is if any of the Diaz backed candidates received the highest amount of votes would that be considered a write in vote?
With all that happened on primary day 2020 one has to wonder who may have the best lawsuit against the Board of Elections. I have also been told by reliable sources that shortly after the votes are counted there will be certain people fired at the Bronx Board of Elections.
Shows on the right side the names of Ruben Diaz backed candidates Barbara Brown (top), and Mohammed Mujumder at the bottom.