POLITICS

Voter Turnout: The Craziest Election Day Stories (VIDEO)

12/05/2008 05:12 am 05:12:01 | Updated May 25, 2011

With record numbers expected to head to the polls all across America today, crazy moments are bound to ensue. Check out some of the best stories so far:

At one precinct in Richmond, hundreds of people encircled a branch library by 6 a.m., the scheduled opening of the polls. But the line grew for another 25 minutes before the poll workers opened the doors. They said the librarian who had a key to the polling place had overslept. Despite the delay under a steady drizzle, voters cheered as the doors opened at 6:25 a.m.

Apparently Robbins has been voting at that polling place for more than a decade, but today his name wasn't on the register. They told Robbins he had to fill out a provisional ballot but he didn't want to do it. An argument erupted between Robbins and the poll worker. Robbins allegedly got loud and the poll worker said he was calling the cops.

A University of Pennsylvania student reported that a Black Panther wielding a "night stick" intimidated voters at a polling place in Philadelphia (video below). The Black Panther allegedly claimed he was "tired of white supremacy." An Obama volunteer on the scene disputed this account, saying there was no intimidation of voters occurring at the polling place.

Perhaps the most bizarre barrier to voting was a car which hit a utility pole in St. Paul's Merriam Park neighborhood. The accident knocked power out for over an hour to two polling locations. Ramsey County officials said voting continued at those sites, and the ballots were kept secure until the power was restored and the ballots could be run through an electronic machine.

Some voting machines are not working properly in Chesapeake, Virginia because of wet weather, according to voters and the State Board of Elections. Spokesman Ryan Enright confirmed the rain is throwing a wrench in the works in a few places that use optical-scan paper ballots.

He said ballots were getting soaked as water drips off wet voters walking into polling stations. That makes the scanner unable to read a ballot.

In a near miss, Barack Obama almost ran into Bill Ayers at the voting booth Tuesday.

Ayers, the 1960s radical who has refused to apologize for setting bombs at government buildings to protest the Vietnam War, showed up first, voting at the Beulah Smith Elementary School in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago where he and Obama both live.

Hundreds converged on polling precincts in Missouri, a crucial battleground state. Norma Storms, a 78-year-old resident of Raytown, said her driveway was filled with cars left by voters who couldn't get into nearby parking lots.

"I have never seen anything like this in all my born days," she said. "I am just astounded."

Suggest a correction