To properly police poll workers and keep activists at arm's reach, President Obama's Ohio volunteers, many of whom are lawyers (and two of whom, full disclosure, are my parents) will have with them copies of a 34-page "observer manual" prepared by the campaign. The document lists their rights and obligations as poll observers, and gives them a four-tier triage system in case they spot any shenanigans at the polls. [...]And what might trigger that level? Seeing, the manual states in capital letters, "SEE[ING] POLLWORKERS CHALLENGING [AN] UNUSUALLY LARGE AMOUNT OF VOTERS, ESPECIALLY OF A PARTICULAR RACE OR OTHER CHARACTERISTIC."
The most serious escalation, Level 3 Action (Declaration & Call) is the campaign's equivalent of a code red. If they see a Level 3–worthy incident (a voter being challenged by a poll worker, or a voter who has mysteriously dropped off the register at his or her proper precinct), observers are instructed to fill out an official Voter Declaration form, as well as calling the boiler room.
• The Voter-Fraud Myth May Turn Suppression into One. Charles P. Pierce writes:
There is absolutely no question that various Republican officials have used their elected offices to depress Democratic voter turnout in several critical states, most notably in Ohio and here in Florida. And there is absolutely no question that the whole question of "voter fraud" is the purest moonshine. Yet, people are going to pretend that the two represent equal sides of the same reality. Which they clearly don't. This leads me to believe the following conclusions:• Frustrated Voter in Westchester County. Joseph Berger at The New York Times writes:
• If the Democratic ticket wins tomorrow, we are going to hear the voter-suppression is a myth and that voter fraud swamped the system. This will begin on the right but will sluice into the mainstream media — "Some people say..." — almost immediately.
Randy Harter, 66, an artist and designer, voted in New Rochelle, in Westchester County, at 6 a.m. and said his frustrating experience was symptomatic of incompetence in government. It was an issue that was on his mind because of what he described as an incompetent response to Hurricane Sandy in an area where thousands of houses still have no power more than a week after the storm struck.He voted for Barack Obama, saying he had inherited a mess and is trying to fix it.
He asked an election worker how to fill out a paper ballot he’d never seen before and was told: “Just fill it out.” When his ballot was inserted, the machine jammed. A second worker came over and brought another machine, and it too jammed. He eventually was given an envelope in which to place a ballot that would be hand-counted. The entire voting experience took 45 minutes, Mr. Harter said.
“Morons are running things, and nobody’s in charge,” he said afterward.
• CEO Lloyd Blankfein leaves the queue. Edith Honan and Philip Barbara write:
Voting at the YMCA on West 63rd Street in Manhattan was delayed because election officials could not find the ballot cards and scanners were not working properly. Among those arriving to vote there was Lloyd Blankfein, the chief executive of investment banking powerhouse Goldman Sachs. He left before voting there began.