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LA County Not Keeping Polls Open After Sanders Lawsuit

Voters wait in line to cast ballots at USC. Natalie Chudnovsky
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Bernie Sanders' 2020 campaign asked a federal court for an emergency order to keep Los Angeles County polls open an extra two hours because of unusually long wait times.

Despite the request, L.A. County Registrar Dean Logan said that they had decided not to extend poll hours in a Tuesday evening press conference. Logan apologized to voters who were still waiting in line.

"I think that to have extended the hours would have just extended the lines, perhaps, and really wouldn't have addressed the core issues," Logan said.

In a complaint filed just before polls were scheduled to close at 8 p.m., the Sanders campaign said voters at multiple locations had waited up to four hours to cast their votes. They said if a court doesn't intervene to force polls to stay open until 10 p.m., "County voters’ right to participate in our democracy will be immediately and irreparably harmed," the complaint reads.

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Sites mentioned in the complaint with long lines and other problems include:

  • Logan Elementary School in Echo Park
  • Evergreen Recreation Center on East 2nd Street
  • Echo Park Recreation Center
  • Mayberry Elementary
  • Santa Monica Community College
  • True Friendship Missionary Baptist Church
  • Santa Monica Virginia Park
  • Ackerman Union on 308 Westwood Plaza
  • St Charles Borromeo Church
  • Plummer Park Community Center
  • Sherman Oaks East Valley Adult Center
  • Crenshaw Mall
  • Buena Vista Library in Burbank
  • Elysian Masonic Lodge
  • Yucca Community Center
  • Cal State University North Ridge
  • Westchester Senior Center

By law, polling places in California must allow people to vote who are in line by 8 p.m. The Sanders campaign wanted polling places to offer provisional ballots to any voters who arrived after 8 p.m.