Thursday, November 16, 2006

E-Day fallout

People who are concerned about civil liberties and civil rights issues often wonder what they can do. After this last Election Day, it became abundantly clear of at least one action that people can take to preserve our democracy- volunteer at the polls. I'm not talking about the poll watching that the parties organize but the actual poll work through the county elections board. Although this is anecdotal, in just my small circle of friends, I heard of three different incidents in three counties of poll workers doing what they should not be doing regarding identification. In two of the three situations, workers asked for photo ID from voters who had previously voted in that precinct. In the most egregious example, a poll worker in Dauphin County asked a first time voter for photo ID (correctly) and her voter registration card. Fortunately, it was a friend of mine who I happened to see that night before the polls closed. She asked me if that was the right thing to do, I said, "No," and she went back and voted.

Volunteering at the polls is one small way to help protect the vote.

Andy in H-burg

2 Comments:

Anonymous paula j said...

A friend from Snyder Co. complained that everyone there could see her name listed under the big bold "D" list and then the machines were thus that everyone behind you could read the screen. She felt that people who would not want their party or choices known (in very Republican Snyder County that might be a teacher or county worker) might feel very intimidated by this procedure. She was, and she didn't even care who knew she was a Dem. or who she voted for. She felt her vote was no longer private.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Keanus said...

In my county, Chester, the poll workers—all Republican appointees, Democrats need not apply—announce each voter and their party registration. I personally don't care if someone else knows my registration (for 46 years I was a Republican but I switched to Democrat in 2004) since I posted signs on my front lawn for Rendell, Casey, and Lois Murphy. But at the polls I think one's registration is a private matter, just as private as one's choices on the ballot.

10:53 PM  

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