Friday, October 15, 2010

Don’t Blame Me: I voted for the “Rich Whitey!”

Whoever did the copy-check on the Illinois ballots may want to “get away” via Southwest Airlines.  There are some days where it pays to just not get out of bed.  Via the Chicago Sun-Times, the ballot mispelled the name of Green Party candidate for Governor, Rich Whitney.

Vote Rich Whitey?

SPRINGFIELD -- The last name of Green Party gubernatorial candidate Rich Whitney is misspelled as "Whitey" on electronic-voting machines in nearly two dozen wards -- about half in predominantly African-American areas -- and election officials said Wednesday the problem cannot be corrected by Election Day.

The misspelling turned up on touch-screen machines in 23 wards overall. Whitney's name is spelled correctly on the machines' initial screens showing all of the candidates' names, but it is misspelled on review screens that later show a voter his or her choices, said Jim Allen, spokesman for the Chicago Board of Elections.

"This is a difficult situation. We'll make the best of it. But the important thing is the name is spelled correctly where it counts, and that's where people are making the selection," Allen said.

Allen said there is not adequate time to reprogram and test machines before Nov. 2. He predicted about 90 percent of the ballots cast that day will be on paper ballots, where Whitney's name is spelled properly.

Some in the twittersphere are suggesting that the misspelling was deliberate and malicious.  I’m not buying it.  This is the Green Party Candidate, not a favorite of the Tea Party that so many state and local union workers have been desperately trying to paint as racist.  If Whitney were are Republican, then some of the suspicion might be warranted.

But should the next Illinois governor start losing favorability and job performance ratings in 2011 and 2012, watch out for all the bumper stickers that say: