As New York City’s contentious primary campaign drew to a close Tuesday, some voters – including one leading mayoral candidate – encountered problems with the city’s decades-old voting machines. Turnout appeared light, but the city’s complaint line received several thousand voting-related calls. Many reported jams and breakdowns in the antiquated lever machines, which were hauled out of retirement to replace much-maligned electronic devices. In some sites, the broken machines forced voters to use pen and paper to cast their ballot. Republican mayoral candidate Joe Lhota presumably wrote his own name when his machine broke at his Brooklyn polling place.
Democrat Anthony Weiner, whose mayoral campaign was dogged by a persistent sexting scandal, also encountered a problem when poll workers were briefly unable to find his signature.
Other candidates had no trouble voting for themselves, including Democratic front-runner Bill de Blasio, the city’s public advocate, who is pitching himself as the cleanest break from Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration.