By Jeff Mays and Maya Rajamani – DNAInfo.com
Donald Trump easily won New York’s Republican presidential primary Tuesday, the Associated Press reported, and Hillary Clinton beat Bernie Sanders among the Democrats, NBC New York reported, as New York emerged as an important presidential election battleground for the first time in decades.
Video: Trump gives victory speech in NY primary
But the state’s moment was marred by a sometimes chaotic primary day full of reports of voters missing from the registration rolls and polls opening late, prompting both the mayor and the city comptroller to call for an investigation of the Board of Elections.
“I would say to BOE, get your act together, because we’re coming into the board, we’re coming with auditors and we’re going to ask questions,” Comptroller Scott Stringer said when he announced an audit of the Board of Elections on Tuesday afternoon.
“These errors today indicate that additional major reforms will be needed to the Board of Election and in the state law governing it,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement. “The perception that numerous voters may have been disenfranchised undermines the integrity of the entire electoral process and must be fixed.”
The hotline for voter issues at state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office also received a much higher volume of complaints than normal.
As of 4 p.m., there had been more than 700 complaints filed, including more than 500 calls and 140 emails. During the 2012 general presidential election, there were a total of 150 complaints.
Rose Clouston, national coordinator at Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, said New Yorkers had also been burning up their Election Protection hotline.
The Washington D.C.-based group says they received nearly 700 calls about voter issues Tuesday, including calls about a polling site that opened two hours late because the poll workers’ keys to access voting materials did not work.
“Some people were discouraged from voting,” Clouston said.