During a press conference updating New Yorkers on the latest developments in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Mayor Michael Bloomberg also addressed arrangements made for Election Day this Tuesday. As at least 60 polling sites are without electricity or are otherwise compromised by storm damage, a number of last-minute decisions have been implemented by the Board of Elections. Needless to say, Mr. Bloomberg did not sound confident.
“The Board of Elections tells us that about 143,000 voters in all five boroughs will be assigned to poll sites different from their usual site,” he explained. “Over the next day, it’s going to be critical that the Board of Elections communicates this new information to their poll workers. Unfortunately, as you know, the Board has had a history of not opening all poll sites on time.”
(Find out if your polling site has been moved here.)
Mr. Bloomberg made sure to note the city’s Board of Elections is managed by the political parties, not his administration.
“As you know, the mayor’s office does not run the Board of Elections, I’ve always believed the Board of Elections should be overhauled to increase its accountability and efficiency,” he said. “The fact that the board has been unable to agree on selecting a new executive director for two years, shows just how dysfunctional it is. The difficulties that they’ve had preparing for Tuesday, I think further underscores that.”
This was not the first time he’s been critical; Mr. Bloomberg called the Board among “the most easily corruptible” in the world in the wake of the primary elections earlier this year.
Later in the press briefing, a reporter asked the mayor how confident he was in the agency’s ability to pull off the election in less than 48 hours.
“I have absolutely no idea,” he answered.