Some student voters have problems at the polls

Some students who pre-registered at libraries on the University campus had problems voting.
Voters cast their ballots at University Lutheran Church of Hope polling station Tuesday in Dinkytown. The Predominantly student prescient draws heavy traffic, as well as complications with election day registration.
  • Emily Dunker
November 07, 2012


Some University of Minnesota students who preregistered to vote on campus last month had trouble voting Tuesday.

Students who said they registered at Wilson and Walter libraries were not on registered lists at their polling locations.

Biology junior Isaac Chauss went to Van Cleve Park early Tuesday to vote, but said he was told his name wasn’t on a list of registered voters.

Chauss said he had to return home to get a Comcast cable bill so he could register at the polling station. He said other student voters who registered at the libraries were having similar problems.

It’s not yet known how many other students had issues at polling places.

Michelle Thimios, a co-chair at the University’s chapter of Minnesota Public Interest Research Group, said problems may have resulted from students not filling out registration information completely.

She said the secretary of state did its best to contact all Minnesotans beforehand if there were problems with their registration.

“Sometimes they get so many, and they’re not able to contact them in time,” Thimios said.

She encouraged affected students to use Minnesota’s same-day registration. In the state, registered voters in the same precinct can vouch for up to 15 others if they can confirm their identity and home address. Voters could also return home to find other proper identification for same-day registration, like a utility bill with a current address.

Minnesota Secretary of State spokesman John Kavanagh said he hadn’t heard of issues with the libraries yet. He said preregistered voters receive a postcard in the mail prior to Election Day.

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