The Washington Post suspects High turnout and new procedures may mean an election day mess. “Election officials across the country are bracing for long lines, equipment failures and confusion over polling procedures that could cost thousands the chance to cast a ballot.”
Premier Election Solutions, the company that makes many of the nation’s voting machines, last month acknowledged that software used in 34 states, including Virginia and Maryland, could cause votes to be dropped. The company, formerly called Diebold, said it has no fix for the problem now, but election officials can catch the errors and recover the votes through a routine process of double-checking electronic memory cards.
The LA Times reports Tempers flare as Hurricane Ike relief efforts continue. Bolivar Peninsula northeast of Galveston “has essentially become an island” and 200 to 250 people in the area refuse to leave. Tens of thousands of people from the region remain in shelters. The death toll has risen to 50 people. The Houston-area death toll is at 23.
Over 1 million people in the Houston area are still without electricity. “State officials worry that it will take weeks to restore basic utilities in towns like Galveston and communities near the Texas-Louisiana border because power substations have been demolished and key infrastructure systems are down.”
The Houston Chronicle reports Galveston may have power in 10 days and FEMA is being criticized by the city of Houston.
FEMA took another round of criticism today from the Houston mayor’s office after ready-to-eat meals ran out at a distribution center at the University of Houston’s Robertson Stadium.
Deputy chief of staff Terrence Fontaine’s outburst came shortly after noon when, after serving about 8,000 meals, the center ran out of food.
“I’m trying to figure out right now where the truck is,” he fumed. “I’ve been waiting on it for three hours. We need it to come from the command station at Reliant (Park). FEMA is saying nothing – nothing. Not yet. I’m waiting on the product to come up the line. . . .All I’ve heard is, the product is on the way.”
Four at Four continues with news from Afghanistan and Iraq, Mexico’s violent drug war, and a 2 for 1 bonus environmental disaster news from the Arctic and Pacific coast.