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Some state House Democrats are calling for an investigation of voting irregularities during the presidential election November 6. State officials said most of the confusion stemmed from the fact that first-time voters as well as those casting a ballot for the first time at that particular polling site have long been required to show a form of ID but not necessarily with a photo. Those requirements were in place even though the controversial Voter ID law, which would require all voters to present an accepted photo ID, was not in effect in last week's election.
Representative Babette Josephs (D-Philadelphia) said she wants to see an investigation of actions taken by the Secretary of State and each county Election Board leading up to the election.
“I am asking for an investigation into many troubling reports of incompetence and perhaps malfeasance that occurred in the general election last week,” Josephs said.
Josephs, who lost in the Democratic primary in April, added there needs to be closer scrutiny of problems voter ID law at individual polling places.
“We heard reports of people who were turned away because they didn’t have photo ID even though the Commonwealth Court had enjoined the law for this election,” Josephs said.
Workers at polling places were supposed to ask people for a photo ID but it was not required to vote.
Josephs said there was a large number of registered voters in Philadelphia whose names were not in poll books as expected and had to cast provisional ballots. She said she is holding out hope Democratic Attorney General-elect Kathleen Kane would be interested in investigating.
Fellow Philadelphia Representative Harold James said the high number of provisional ballots is suspect.
“We kind of believe that there had to be something wrong. I’m part of the Voter Protection Coalition and we definitely want this investigation,” James said.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reported more than 27,000 provisional ballots were cast in Philadelphia in this year’s general election--about twice as many as were cast in the city in 2008.