Tennessee Twisters Force Super Tuesday Ballot Extension

Tennessee Twisters Force Super Tuesday Ballot Extension

(RightWing.org) – Nature intervened dramatically in the Super Tuesday primaries this week, as a series of devastating tornados ripped through Tennessee causing huge disruption. With many polling places damaged, and voters struggling to find alternatives, a judge ordered that voting must continue through to 8 pm – with some locations gaining an extension to 10 pm.

Highlights

At least two tornados struck Nashville through the night of March 2 and 3, leaving an estimated 25 dead and dozens more missing or injured.

  • The first tornado touched down around 12:40 am, carving a path of devastation through downtown Nashville. It’s unusual for the city to be hit, but this one demolished dozens of buildings and caused numerous casualties.
  • More tornados hit the area over the next hour or so in Putnam County, east of Nashville. One ripped through the town of Mt. Juliet, again causing serious damage.
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  • Among the buildings hit were several schools, some of them designated as polling places for the primary vote. In Davidson County, over a dozen polling places were damaged by the storm.
  • When voters began arriving around 7 am, many of them found that the location they were supposed to use was closed because of the damage. In Davidson County, the vote didn’t open until 8 am as officials scrambled to find alternative locations.
  • Long lines formed at some of the surviving polling places, as staff struggled to cope with larger than expected voter numbers. The result was that many people didn’t get a chance to vote before they had to go to work.
  • The Tennessee Democratic Party, as well as the Biden, Bloomberg, Sanders and Warren campaigns, went to court to ask for an extension that would give everyone a chance to vote.
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  • Following these appeals, a judge in Davidson County, the second-largest in Tennessee, ruled that polling places should stay open until 8 pm. On top of that, five “mega sites,” which were open to all voters in the county, extended their hours to 10 pm.
  • Tennessee Democratic Party chair Elizabeth Mancini said, “This is a victory for all voters and this decision will ensure that everyone has the opportunity to participate in this historic election.”
  • When the votes were counted it turned out that former Vice President Joe Biden had scored a surprise win in Tennessee, despite having done almost no campaigning in the state.

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