Despite technical glitches and long waits that marred Election Day for some, a new study from the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University found that a majority of voters overwhelmingly approved of the new voting center experience.
Those who avoided afternoon and evening hours gave the new voting center model high marks. Ninety-three percent of voters who cast their ballots before 4 p.m. told researchers their experience at the voting center was "excellent" or "good." That number fell to 83% among those who voted after
Likewise, those who voted before 4 p.m. reported few of the long lines that troubled later voters, with just 11% waiting in line more than 20 minutes in the earlier part of the day, compared to 30% of those who voted after 4 p.m.
"Though we've seen evidence of long lines and broken machines at some polling places, the vast majority of voters described their experience on Election Day in positive terms," said Brianne Gilbert, associate director of the center. "The county still has work to do to resolve the issues that troubled voting centers, particularly those where wait times dragged on for hours. But we shouldn't discount the positive feedback most voters provided."
The results of the survey, conducted on March 3 at 50 voting centers across Los Angeles County, identify areas of success and concern for elections officials. For instance, more than half of in-person voters showed up at voting centers after 4 p.m., but that group had lower awareness of the early voting opportunities that began this year.