Berlin – After the election on Sunday, more and more breakdowns are known. Not only did the ballot papers run out in some polling stations: in Neukölln, security guards wanted to prevent a very old woman from voting. Around noon, the woman with her walker appeared in front of the polling station in the Zurich elementary school, reports CDU district politician Nimet Avci, who witnessed the incident.
“She said she didn’t get her postal voting papers until Thursday. Because she was afraid that her ballot papers would not arrive on time, she wanted to hand them in on the spot. Two security men turned her away, ”says Avci. She herself then ensured that the woman received new documents and could exercise her right to vote. “This is an incredible process,” says Avci outraged.
“That a security force decides who can vote is a mad thing,” says Neukölln’s health and youth councilor Falko Liecke (CDU). “It is to be feared that something like this has also happened elsewhere.” Liecke now wants to look at the protocols from the polling stations.
There are also reports from Rudow that minors were given all voting papers. From the age of 16 you can only take part in the elections for the District Assembly (BVV), but not in those for the House of Representatives and the Bundestag.
There are also reports of irregularities from Treptow-Köpenick. At around 10.30 a.m., a citizen drew the attention of the election workers in Baumschulenweg to the fact that they had only given him the notes for the BVV and Bundestag, but not for the House of Representatives. The helpers were amazed to find that the notes were in a box. It is suspected that no votes for the House of Representatives were cast in the polling station from 8 a.m. to 10.30 a.m.
Even after 6 p.m. you could still have queued
Because of the Corona regulations, everything went slower. The number of ballot papers was generally high because BVV, House of Representatives and Bundestag elections and a referendum were pending. The turnout was also high. All of this led to queues in front of the polling stations. That’s why some stayed up after 6 p.m. – for those who had been in line up until then. At 5:45 p.m., hundreds were waiting in front of the bar on Schwedter Strasse in Prenzlauer Berg. It would have been possible to queue here after 6 p.m., it is reported. There are similar stories from Rüdesheimer Platz in Wilmersdorf. Accordingly, people lined up there after 6 p.m. to vote. In a pub on Kastanienallee in Prenzlauer Berg, citizens could no longer vote, although they had to queue before 6 p.m., but there were no more ballot papers after 6 p.m.
In the meantime, Senator for Culture Klaus Lederer (left) has asked the RBB to recount the votes cast in his constituency in Pankow. 30 votes separate him from his direct mandate for the House of Representatives. He was narrowly defeated by a Green competitor.
The four election observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) also registered the mishaps during the election in Berlin. “If you have any tips that will help us, we are very grateful,” said Christian Gaebler (SPD), head of the Senate Chancellery, on Tuesday. The Senate rejects any responsibility for the mishaps. “The organization is up to the state election officers and the district election officers,” said Gaebler. The internal administration has the legal, but not the technical supervision. The number where there were difficulties is “in the double-digit range”.
Gaebler does not see the fact that the Berlin Marathon was held on the same day as the main problem, but the many ballot papers and hygiene requirements. “The marathon could not have been postponed either, it is part of an international sports calendar.” The federal government refused to bring the elections forward a week.
Apparently there is not even an overview of the exact numbers in Berlin. State Returning Officer Petra Michaelis reported on Monday that 34,000 volunteer election workers were active in 2,257 polling stations. Senate Chancellor Gaebler spoke on Tuesday of 22,000 volunteers in 2,245 restaurants.