Public outrage is on the rise after more information about the Office of Elections management failures on General Election Day is documented. Hundreds of people at 24 precincts around Oahu waited as long as three hours to vote because of ballot shortages. In some cases, people left without voting because they could not wait. Callers to local talk shows are demanding a revote. Several note the precincts that ran out of ballots were largely in districts that opposed the controversial $5.2 billion rail project and supported the mayoral candidacy of former Gov. Ben Cayetano. Cayetano lost the election to union-backed Kirk Caldwell after a substantial lead in the polls.
In response to public outcry, the Honolulu City Council passed a unanimous resolution on Wednesday requesting Gov. Neil Abercrombie conduct an investigation into the November 6 General Election.
Councilman Tom Berg, who introduced the resolution, said “It is our duty and obligation to speak up and restore faith in the voting process. To sit back and do nothing is inexcusable. We must, as an elected body, take action.” Election officials have disclosed that 24 out of 140 polling places on the island of Oahu ran out of paper ballots during the General Election.
The number was originally reported as 5 polling places, but by the day after the election, that number had increased by nearly five times. With just one electronic voting machine at each location, only about 10 voters per hour could be accommodated. Others waited in line for sometimes more than hour for additional paper ballots to arrive. The League of Women Voters of Hawaii earlier called on the Hawaii State Legislature to take action.