Updated: Friday, 05 Nov 2010, 9:13 AM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 03 Nov 2010, 3:45 PM EDT
Bridgeport, Conn. (WTNH) - The Democratic registrar of voters in Connecticut’s largest city says her office didn't order enough ballots for Tuesday's election in part because of the cost.
Several Bridgeport polling places ran out of ballots as early as 2:30 p.m. on Election Day. According to the state, Bridgeport has almost 70,000 registered voters. But the Registrar of Voters only ordered 21,000 ballots because, she says, too many ballots were ordered for the past three elections.
“We'd have cases of ballot that were never touched and were unopened,” stated Registrar Sandi Ayala said. “And they cost a lot of money."
Bridgeport Registrars of Voters took the average turnout from the last three elections and ordered that many ballots.
President Obama had come to Bridgeport just three days before and got voters excited about getting out there to cast their ballot.
"If everybody who voted in 2008 shows up in 2010, then we win this election,” said the President.
The surprising turnout caused the ballot shortage and that left some would-be voters just waiting around for more ballots.
The Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz had to step in Tuesday to get replacement ballots. She went to court to asking a judge to keep some of the polls open until 10 p.m.
"And it's great that the polls were open until 10, but too little too late. People that left were frustrated, they needed to get to work,” said Carolyn Vermont, Bridgeport’s NAACP President. “They needed to get home to their children, so they were not coming back out. So I really feel people were robbed of their voting privilege.”
Carolyn Vermont says the national office will be investigating the ballot blunder.
Mayor William Finch (D-Bridgeport) said he is outraged and is taking steps to make sure it never happens again.
News 8’s Kent Pierce asked Registrar Ayala if she thought any of her election results were going to get challenged in court. She said anyone can challenge a vote, but that she and her colleagues did the right thing.