New York City comptroller Scott Stringer has ordered a full audit of the city’s Board of Elections after widespread complaints over the voting process.
As the city comptroller, Stringer has the authority to conduct performance audits of all state agencies, including the Board of Elections. Stringer’s order of a full audit comes after the news that 126,000 voters in Brooklyn were quietly purged from county voter rolls over the last five months, and in response to the news of polling places opening two hours late and voting machines not working. Stringer issued a public statement Tuesday afternoon, describing the Board of Elections as “disorganized, chaotic and inefficient.”
“There is nothing more sacred in our nation than the right to vote, yet election after election, reports come in of people who were inexplicably purged from the polls, told to vote at the wrong location or unable to get in to their polling site. The people of New York City have lost confidence that the Board of Elections can effectively administer elections and we intend to find out why the BOE is so consistently disorganized, chaotic and inefficient. With four elections in New York City in 2016 alone, we don’t have a moment to spare.”
In an official letter to Board of Elections executive director Michael Ryan, Stringer asked Ryan for the agency’s response in how it conducts poll site operations, communications with voters, training of poll workers, and complaints of voter disenfranchisement.
“All New Yorkers deserve an electoral system that is free, fair and efficient — not one riddled with chaos and confusion,” Stringer wrote.