Tag Archives: making a mistake on the ballot

I coulda voted twice


For the first time in my life, I voted early. But before telling you more of that story, I’ve got to  point out that in my state, Florida, Trump’s name is the first one you’ll read on the ballot when deciding which presidential candidate to vote for

What happened to alphabetical order?

Turns out, the answer has to do with Governor Scott.

According to Florida law, in an election year the  party our state’s governor is affiliated with determines which presidential candidate’s name will get top billing on the ballot. In this case, because Scott is a Republican Donnie got the primo spot.

Seems a little preferential and right leaning to me. But that’s how it is.

As for  voting twice, let me begin with a little bit about our ballots. For openers,  the size of the voting ballot in Palm Beach County is yuge. Really yuge.

Our paper ballot is something like 20” x 9”. That’s a few inches shy of the length of a page in our local newspaper, at least double  the length of my iPhone and much larger than any menu you’ve ever seen. In other words, it is cumbersome yuge.

Nonetheless, it’s what we awkwardly have to work with.

To vote for whomever, all you have to do is fill in the space between the two arrows that follow your candidate of choice’s name. It’s like a  connect-the-arrows exercise.

Sounds simple enough. But I goofed up and  didn’t know that  until the machine that actually counts the votes spit my ballot out.

According to the person tending the  voting machine, I had voted for too many judges. He knew that because at the same time my ballot was being rejected a printout popped up stating the error. Good to know those machines really do work. No rigging going on here.

To correct my error the poll worker told me that I had two choices: I could override the judge selections on my ballot (voiding them all). Or, decide to take it from the top and vote again.

I thought a moment and said, “Screw the judges.”  I didn’t know much about any of them in the first place  and all I was really interested in was voting for our next president.

So I decided to let my original ballot be the one that counted  and  passed  up the opportunity to vote again.

That said, if this elections  winds up to be a super tight  with only a few votes separating the winner from the loser, don’t blame me. I know a few other people who also made mistakes on their ballots.  So blame the ballots in Palm Beach County where bigger isn’t always better.

(As an aside, I voted at the Police Department in downtown West Palm Beach. No waiting there. Give it a try if you haven’t voted yet and want to vote early.)