Hooray! New Yorkers are flocking to their polling sites to cast their ballots in this year's Presidential Election. (Yes, yes, there are other races, too.) But they are finding long lines! Remember: The 2008 election also saw great turnout. [Remember: You can share your photos and stories of democracy in action by emailing them to tips@gothamist.com or Tweeting us at a @Gothamist.]

On the Upper West Side at 7:10 a.m., this writer had a 40-minute wait—nothing to complain about expect for the dickhead who was complaining about the lines, because he's the guy who FOLDED his ballot and fed it into the scanner which jammed the machine (which had just been fixed from a previous jam!). The poll worker said that 15 people were waiting to vote when they opened at 6 a.m.

John Del Signore tells us, "The line to get in wound through the halls and out the front door in Williamsburg's Southside polling place on South 3rd Street, but the poll workers worked quickly and the line moved surprisingly fast. It was a deceptively long line. But that was just the first line—to find out what specific precinct (if that's the right word?) I was in. This was followed by a line at that precinct to get my ballot, then a line to use the scanners. Only two out of five scanners were working. A poll worker said two were broken and the third was reserved as a backup. Another poll worker told me it was extremely busy all morning from the moment they opened. "

Here's a panorama from P.S. 167 on the Upper East Side, where a voter tells us that he "waited in line for over an hour to get a ballot, then got sent back outside to wait in this line to feed the ballot into the scanner."


In Harlem, Joe Schumacher tells us a couple hundred people were waiting in PS 149, "We are lined up and down the main hallway.  Unlike 2008 the line is moving steadily." The wait to vote: Two hours.

Tien Mao says that at the Crown Heights Community Center, "Apparently people here are going to the front to find their ED and then voting instead of going back to their spot in line. People not happy about that. "

Here's a panorama from 109th & Broadway in Manhattan—about an hour and a half wait:


A tipster says at his Upper Manhattan polling location:

Poll workers couldn't really talk. The two poll workers in our district (78th) were barely literate, which was one reason the line was so slow. So basically the guy in charge of the gym explained why it was taking so long, and that the one woman could read & write but not do math - so the way the sequential ballots worked was a challenge for her (pairing the voting cards with the
ballots in the workbook). Between my wife and I, it took five minutes. I was voter 104 at about about 9:15 - and certainly some of the cards had been discarded because of
error. So that's an average of about two minutes a poll worker in the line. No good.

Multiple scanners were broken, and there was a line for the privacy booths. I just filled my ballot out on the side of the scanner. No one was explaining that people had to fill out their ballots first, so people were going to the scanner first, then the privacy booths, then
back to the scanner.

Mayor Bloomberg voted at P.S. 6 on the Upper East Side—his office says he waited 45 minutes (to cast his ballot for President Obama, we imagine).

Another UWS resident said:

Long wait to nowhere --  like some sort of Soviet-era bread line!  We got to the front and they said "If you're in district 34 you need to be in that line over there"   Would it have been so hard to make that announcement when we got in line 45 minutes earlier?  Or maybe put up a sign.   Never mind the only way I knew if I was district 34 or 35 was by looking it up on my iphone.   EXTREMELY stupid layout for traffic flow -- get in line, find out you're in the wrong line, get in another line, get a ballot and cross three lines of people to get to the "privacy screen" stations, then recross same three lines to get to the ballot scanners.  THEN, just before I voted, both scanners (there were only two for the two districts voting in this location!!) jammed.   Someone called a technician, who knows if they ever showed.  Then they reverted to paper ballots, which for those that had electronically voted it meant recrossing to the "privacy screens", then back across the lines to a lady standing next to the scanners (why couldn't she stand next to the privacy screens???  I suggested it to them, but it was apparently "against the rules")  where she stuffed them in a manila envelope.  I have no hope whatsoever that my vote will be counted today, or ever.   Talk about voter suppression -- this idiotic and incompetent system suppresses the vote of anyone who has a job and has to be somewhere.    I stuck with it but people in front of me were walking out.   Bring back the booths with the levers -- what was wrong with them??   

Finally, New York resident John Kuhner shared these inspiring words from the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who briefed volunteers during a get-out-the-vote effort in Ohio over the weekend. Jackson said something along of the lines of, "Tell them Nelson Mandela waited 27 years in line. If we have to wait three or four hours in line to vote, we will wait three or four hours. They don't want us to vote but we will vote. If Mandela waited 27 years, you can wait three or four hours."