Justice Dept. to Dispatch More Than 500 Staffers to Monitor Polls | NECN
Decision 2016

Decision 2016

Full coverage of the race for the White House

Justice Dept. to Dispatch More Than 500 Staffers to Monitor Polls

In 2012, roughly 780 monitors and observers were dispatched to observe polls, down because of a Supreme Court ruling on the Voting Rights Act

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are hitting several states Monday, trying to make a final push before Election Day. (Published Monday, Nov. 7, 2016)

    The Justice Department said Monday it will send more than 500 staffers to 28 states on Election Day to monitor the polls, a 35 percent reduction from the number four years ago.

    The personnel will be dispatched to 67 jurisdictions to watch for potential civil rights violations, such as discrimination on the basis of race, religion or gender.

    The announcement comes amid rising concerns about voter intimidation, particularly aimed at minorities.

    The number of personnel is fewer than the roughly 780 monitors and observers who were dispatched in 2012. The Justice Department has said its poll-watching presence has been curtailed by a 2013 Supreme Court opinion that gutted a key provision of the Voting Rights Acts. That has led to a reduction in trained observers, who enjoy unfettered access to the polls and cannot be removed from the sites.

    ‘Bathroom Bill’ to Cost North Carolina $3.7 Billion: AP

    [NATL] AP Exclusive: ‘Bathroom Bill’ to Cost North Carolina $3.7 Billion

    The Associated Press used dozens of interviews and multiple public records requests to compile an analysis that shows North Carolina’s “bathroom bill” is expected to cost the state more than $3.76 billion in lost business over a dozen years.

    (Published 14 minutes ago)

    Most of the more than 500 staffers will be monitors, who rely on the cooperation of local officials to do their jobs. Observers in this election are limited to a handful of jurisdictions around the country where federal court orders are in place that authorize their presence.

    Justice Department officials say they hope voters will not detect any difference in the federal presence.

    Among the states receiving federal monitors are those that have changed their voting rights laws since the last presidential election, including North Carolina, or that have reported problems in past elections.

    "In most cases, voters on the ground will see very little practical difference between monitors and observers," Vanita Gupta, head of the department's Civil Rights Division, said in a statement. "We work closely and cooperatively with jurisdictions around the country to ensure that trained personnel are able to keep an eye on the proceedings from an immediate vantage point."

    Gator Gobbles Down Golf Ball at Florida Golf Course

    [NATL-MI] Gator Gobbles Down Golf Ball at Florida Golf Course

    Watch out for the gator hazard on the third hole. A golfer at Long Marsh golf course on Florida's west coast near Port Charlotte hit a ball toward a lake where an alligator was waiting on March 25. The ball struck the gator and the reptile retaliated, NBC affiliate WPTV reported.  

    (Published 17 minutes ago)