NORWICH – From Carol Franklin’s and Harriet Jenkins’ perspective, Nov. 7 will probably feel more like a bead-flinging Fat Tuesday during Mardi Gras, than a lever-pulling, ballot-punching national Election Day. They say it should feel that way to everyone else, too.
According to Franklin and Jenkins, the Board of Elections Commissioners for Chenango County, voting day isn’t some assumed magical production (if you didn’t know) that’s guided by an unseen force, but rather it’s the culmination of a years’ worth of hard work, led by an almost exact science – which they admit does involve a little magic.
“If you followed it from start to finish, you would be amazed at what goes on,” said Jenkins, the Republican commissioner. “It’s very interesting, it really is.”
Aside from meticulously coordinating and implementing every logistical aspect of an election, the commissioners explained that they aren’t unfamiliar with, and are sometimes a magnet for, the off-beat and the unusual of American culture.
“Some of the stuff you get here is unbelievable,” said Franklin, the Democratic commissioner.
According to the local voting officials – more so than people realize – elections can become an expression of a person’s or a community’s imagination and identity.