NJ judge rejects request to extend voting after scattered issues
A request to extend voting hours around the state has been rejected by a state Superior Court Judge.
The complaint filed on Tuesday afternoon by the American Civil Liberties Union and the League of Women Voters was based on scattered reports of voting difficulties earlier in the day.
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New Jersey Globe was first to report on the decision by Superior Court Judge William Anklowitz, who said that there was no evidence that any voter was disenfranchised.
The request had been opposed by the Office of the Attorney General and was not supported by either the re-election campaign of Gov. Phil Murphy or the campaign of his Republican challenger, Jack Ciattarelli.
"The Office of the Attorney General is responsible for representing the positions of its clients, including the Secretary of State, the Division of Elections, and the 21 County Boards of Elections," according to a written statement about an hour before the scheduled closing of polling locations at 8 p.m.
"Consistent with that responsibility, the Office will oppose the statewide relief requested in this complaint."
Individual cases where voters can prove that delays at their polling site prevented them from casting a ballot still could be filed, according to the office's spokesperson, who also pointed out that neither the Office of the Attorney General nor the state agencies it oversees has the authority to extend voting hours.
Deputy State Attorney General Susan Scott said that after 7 p.m., there were 45-minute lines at several polling locations, according to David Wildstein, of New Jersey Globe, via Twitter.
This is the first election in New Jersey since early voting was adopted, which means new technology including electronic poll books is being used across the state.
That wasn’t an issue during the nine days of early voting that ended Sunday but appeared to be in at least a few polling places earlier on Tuesday.
With previous reporting by Michael Symons