LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The vote count in Luzerne County got a late start Tuesday because the court-ordered voting was extended until 10:00 p.m.
It all had to do with a paper shortage at some polling places.
Many voters are asking, how could this possibly happen? Luzerne County has had problems in recent elections that have been well documented.
Eyewitness News was live outside Penn Place, where the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections is located and where the vote count is underway.
Attorneys for the Democratic and Republican parties petitioned Luzerne County Court to extend voting to 10:00 p.m.
They wanted to give voters, who may have been turned away, a chance to cast their vote. There was not enough paper in the voting machines, nor was there enough paper to be used as provisional ballots or emergency ballots.
Judge Lisa Gelb approved the request saying that voters cannot be disenfranchised.
Eyewitness News spoke to a voter from Shickshinny and she was not happy.
“We heard from someone who had gone in that there was no paper. So we, unfortunately, had to go home. I called a number I found online and I was put on a waiting list. It was frustrating. I felt like my rights were violated,” stated Audrey Voyton, a voter from Shickshinny.
Below you can find the video of a full live interview with election officials.
And we are hearing the same type of comments from other voters. But a big concern now is, how many voters were turned away and could not return to vote later in the day.
Earlier Tuesday, Eyewitness News spoke with Beth McBride, the Acting Director of the Luzerne County Bureau of Elections.
She says an investigation is underway into how this paper shortage happened. She also stated that she takes this personally and promises it will never happen again under her watch.