4 Ways Election Day Could Go Horribly Wrong
Chances of 2000-style debacle high, experts say
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Nov 5, 2012 1:22 AM CST
Updated Nov 5, 2012 5:03 AM CST
A delivery driver pushes a vote-counting scanner into a truck at the Pulaski County Election Commission warehouse in Little Rock, Ark.   (AP Photo/Danny Johnston)

(Newser) – Election Day is almost here and experts fear that the chances of a 2000-style mess that prevents the winner from being known for days or weeks are higher than ever this time around. NBC runs through some of the worst-case scenarios.

  • Provisional ballots could make it impossible to determine the winner straight away, especially in Ohio, where more than 200,000 voters have not returned absentee ballots. If they try to vote on Tuesday, they will have to cast provisional ballots, which Ohio law says can't be counted until Nov. 16.

  • "Citizen poll watchers" could cause chaos. Groups like the Tea Party-inspired "True the Vote" are planning a major effort to sniff out voter fraud, and voting right groups who fear legitimate voters could be intimidated are sending out their own groups of poll watchers.
  • Printing errors and voting machine problems could delay the vote count in swing states, and if a recount is required, Virginia and Pennsylvania are among 16 states using touch-screen voting machines that don't leave a paper trail that can be verified in a recount.
  • The aftermath of superstorm Sandy could keep voting totals low in affected states including New Jersey, where residents will be allowed to submit ballots by fax or email. The hardest-hit states are all expected to vote Democratic, but the storm has raised the chances that Obama could win the Electoral College while losing the popular vote.

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Showing 3 of 54 comments
thirdimpact
Nov 5, 2012 7:04 PM CST
Blood will rain from the skies. The mountains will crumble. Locusts will feast on our crops. There will be famine and pestilence. The Kracken will emerge from the Atlantic. Cthulhu will emerge from the Pacific. There will be rioting in the streets. And then... the UFOs will descend on our capitols.
boldt
Nov 5, 2012 12:48 PM CST
If Obama wins we will have four more years of the GOPs filibustering US into a recession. If Romney wins we will have four more years of the GOPs actively working US into a recession. "Politics is for fools and liars"
Mr.LarryG.
Nov 5, 2012 12:09 PM CST
Mitt forgot to tell us that he is gonna eliminate Medicare, SocialSecurity, disregard the 47 % of america, give tax breaks to the filthy rich, eliminate home mortgage interest deductions and property tax deductions.