BREAKING NEWS: Poll workers, machines don’t show at some precincts

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Workers at a precinct at the Dallas County Courthouse in Selma didn’t show up to open and let voters in today at 7 a.m.

And by 8 a.m., city workers were asking voters if they wanted to work the polls today.

Voting on the $12.3 million bond issue got off to a rocky start at several other precincts reported they didn’t have voting machines.

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“This is Selma, and you can’t vote?” said Stephen Brooks, who had waited for nearly an hour to cast his ballot.

Selma is known nationally for being the flashpoint for the 1965 Voting Rights Act, passed by Congress after several attempts to march from this Black Belt town to Montgomery. The march is celebrated each year in March in a Jubilee.

About a half-dozen people continued to wait at 8 a.m. as a city worker solicited them to work at the polls. Nancy Bennett, a local real estate agent and voter in the precinct, questioned the ability of untrained workers to function.

Mayor James Perkins Jr. couldn’t be reached for comment.