The line was out the door at 7 a.m. today when poll worker Petra Reyes showed up to man her station deep in Tom DeLay land. Stationed at Elkins High School in Fort Bend County, Reyes said by 10:30 a.m. she'd only had to show five people how to use the new electronic voting wheel. So either (a) a lot of people were voting for Nick Lampson (b) a lot of really sharp people already knew how to spin the wheel or (c) they were "doing a good job faking it" in the booths, as one election worker put it.
Speaking of the booths, during a 10 to 10:30 slot, voters didn't appear to be leaving those booths too quickly. There were 23 people in line and seven others at the booths. Head election judge Patsy Summers said the only problem she was having was "for me being ignorant about this" gesturing at the new voting machine. Said Summers:
"People said we want the paper ballots. Well, I can't do anything about that."
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Roaming the high school grounds outside was Randy Skender, a Shelley Sekula-Gibbs volunteer. Skender had driven down from northwest Houston for the day to hand out literature and help in any way he could. Affable and friendly, he said that from talking with people he thought that sometimes it was taking a long time to spin the wheel. Also, dangerous for his candidate: "With her being on these twice, some people may miss the second time they need to vote for her." -- Margaret Downing