Centralized Voting System, End of Straight Party Tickets Contributed to Long Lines, Glitches

Nov 7, 2012

RIO RANCHO, N.M. (AP) — New voting systems triggered long voting lines and a shortage of voting machines in some polling sites in New Mexico.

In Rio Rancho, some voters found themselves Tuesday in three-hour lines and continued waiting into early Wednesday morning. The long lines sparked a visit by Governor Susana Martinez who passed out water to those waiting.

Delays were blamed on high turnout and a switch from precinct polling sites to centralized voting centers.

In Bernalillo County, the state's most populous, voting lines varied from just a few minutes to a couple of hours. The county's new system allowed voters to cast ballots at any of its 69 voting centers.

Critics also blamed delays on the state's move from straight party voting and a ballot with a number of questions.