Nov 7, 2012

After the storm, how New Yorkers got out to vote

It was bitterly cold, and their neighbourhoods were still recovering from superstorm Sandy, but New Yorkers weren't going to be stopped from voting. Freelance journalist Sally Davies joined them.

New York voters

It was a face-puckering 2 degrees at Coney Island this morning, one of New York’s beachside neighbourhoods hit hard by hurricane Sandy. Not even choosing the leader of the free world was going to get in the way of the clean-up — especially not with another, thankfully smaller, storm due to strike on Wednesday night. Tow-trucks lined boulevards to haul fleets of ruined cars, striped with mud-marks like geological strata from the rising storm waters. Musty smells wafted from waterlogged basements, from which shop owners jettisoned useless electronics.

The storm’s aftermath seemed to deter some voters. “It’s super slow today,” said Erica Omundsen, a 38-year-old volunteer at a Coney Island polling booth, whose organisation offers information to help voters cast their ballots. “There’s been some confusion with locations; I don’t think the city’s been very good at getting the word out.”

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