Voting Rights Advocates Address Potential Voter Intimidation On Election Day

By Casey Kuhn
Published: Friday, November 4, 2016 - 5:24pm
Updated: Friday, November 4, 2016 - 5:28pm
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(Photo by Casey Kuhn - KJZZ)
A press conference held by Arizona voting rights advocates.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has been warning this election could be rigged, prompting more people to volunteer as poll watchers in Arizona, and a coalition has formed to help fight any potential voter intimidation on Election Day.

No photography, political signs, campaigning or firearms are allowed within 75 feet of polling place. If any problems arise in that area, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office is the agency that responds.

Local voting-rights advocates came together Friday to stress MCSO shouldn’t be the first responders to non-emergency issues at polling places

Arizona Advocacy Network director Samantha Pstross says because of the office’s history of discrimination and Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s current legal issues, election officials should turn to other law enforcement.

“They’re the last group that should be called for any situations on Election Day because their very presence could cause voter intimidation.”

She said voters can call 1-866-OUR-VOTE if they run into problems voting.

“If any voter intimidation or discrimination occurs that their first call should be to the Department of Justice," Pstross said. "Last week, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced that there will be a department of elections office here in Arizona.”

There will be six MCSO deputies roving on Election Day, and if there is an issue outside the 75 foot zone at a polling place, it will be handled by local police.

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